Kassandra Hill


Unmasking the Invisible Scars of Medical Trauma: What are the psychological effects of direct or indirect medical trauma, and what are the recommended preventive measures and modalities used to resolve.


Depression, anxiety, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and Acute Stress Disorder are some of the long-term effects of medical trauma that can be mitigated by early diagnosis and treatment. This emphasizes the necessity of prompt recognition and diagnosis of Medical Trauma. We will discuss the impact of the effects of medical trauma on mental health and the development and maintenance of coping skills after medical trauma. The benefits of addressing and treating a stressor as it occurs will have a significant impact on the management of medical trauma in the medical setting. Implications of developing assessment tools, trauma intervention plans, what administering modalities during a trauma would look like, and identifying appropriate means to reduce medical noncompliance due to untreated symptoms of medical trauma. The purpose of this capstone is to acquire a deeper understanding of how these victims can be identified and how their symptoms improve or persist over time. By assessing and identifying those at early risk, it may be possible to reduce the risk of re-traumatization, ascertain best practices, and improve clinical care. Early identification of medical trauma permits clinicians to initiate interventions and evidence-based modalities as soon as feasible to mitigate long-term PTSD symptoms such as Anxiety, Depression, flashbacks, and nightmares. This information is important because medical trauma affects millions of people daily and goes unrecognized, undiagnosed, and undertreated. It is a medical crisis that literally hides in plain sight. There are many gaps in the literature and research for medical trauma. There are modalities that are used to treat medical trauma.


Known for her extensive work as a medical social worker, Kassandra Hill shines a light on the importance of identifying medical trauma and establishing the proper protocols to treat medical PTSD. She is a proud HBCU graduate, having received her Bachelor of Science degree from Oakwood University in Huntsville, Alabama, and her Master of Social Work degree from the “real HU,” Howard University in Washington, D.C. Kassandra is a doctoral candidate at the University of Kentucky, where she will complete her doctorate in social work in May of 2024. Kassandra is a licensed clinical social worker for a U.S. Army installation in west Georgia, where she provides intensive outpatient services to active-duty service members by teaching skills groups and providing individual therapeutic services as a trauma intensive therapist using evidence-based therapies. Kassandra is trained in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Cognitive Processing Therapy and Eye-Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy. She is currently working to obtain her certification to become a certified clinical trauma professional.

Kassandra draws on her experience as the mother of a liver transplant recipient and her experience of witnessing and supporting families in her journey as an emergency room trauma team social worker at Children’s National and Children’s Hospital of Birmingham, Alabama, as well as her own personal journey as a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and transplant mom. Kassandra, blending her 26 years of experience as a licensed social worker with her personal experiences, is a much-needed voice in the emerging field of medical trauma.