Human trafficking and the role of the health provider

Catholic Health Initiatives (CHI) has a long-standing commitment to violence prevention that was formalized in 2008 as a system-wide campaign - United Against Violence. Working through public policy, community-based initiatives, socially responsible investing and education, CHI addresses violence across a broad continuum. CHI recognizes that this complex issue must be addressed with a multi-faceted approach.

Our commitment to preventing violence, along with our inherent call to care for our most vulnerable community members, compels us to address the devastating issue of human trafficking – the practice of modern day slavery. Human trafficking is an affront to basic human rights and dignity, and health care providers are uniquely positioned to identify and respond to victims in the health care setting. The resources on this page accompany CHI’s clinical education modules, supporting health providers with additional information, tools and materials for clinical practice.

Addressing Human Trafficking in the Health Care Setting is an educational course developed by CHI, in collaboration with Massachusetts General Hospital Human Trafficking Initiative. This comprehensive course will aid clinicians in human trafficking victim identification and appropriate response. 

The course includes an interactive, downloadable Quick Reference Guide that can be saved and easily accessed from a mobile device to assist providers with essential information in the health care setting. Additionally, a course brochure is available. This course is based on Massachusetts General Hospital’s clinical education: Human Trafficking: Guidebook on Identification, Assessment, and Response in the Health Care Setting. It was created in consultation with:


Wendy Macias-Konstantopoulos, MD

MPH Medical Director Human Trafficking Initiative Division of Global Health & Human Rights Department of Emergency Medicine Massachusetts General Hospital

Roy Ahn, MPH, ScD

Research Director Human Trafficking Initiative Division of Global Health & Human Rights Department of Emergency Medicine Massachusetts General Hospital

For a general introduction to human trafficking, please see CHI’s video: Human Trafficking: Understanding a Complex Issue. This educational video also comes with an accompanying brochure.

“You have rights in the U.S. regardless of your immigration status.”

U.S. Department of Homeland Security: Blue Campaign

U.S. Department of Homeland Security: Immigration Assistance

Compassion Fatigue Solutions

Figley Institute

National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC)

NHTRC 24-Hour Human Trafficking Hotline: 1-888-373-7888

U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement Health Provider Resource Guide for Identifying Potential Victims of Human Trafficking

Institute of Medicine: Confronting Commercial Sexual Exploitation and Sex trafficking of Minors in the United States – A Guide for the Health Care Sector

US Department of Health and Human Services

US Department of State, Trafficking in Persons Annual Report

Polaris Project

Federal Strategic Action Plan on Services for Victims of Human Trafficking in the United States, 2013-2017

An introduction to human trafficking for the health care community

For more information, contact