Our Mission:

Expand awareness and knowledge about the adverse impact of trauma on childbearing people, their perinatal care team, and the community.

Our Vision:

We envision a world where all childbearing families - especially those who have experienced trauma - achieve optimal health and wellbeing.

PATTCh's story:

Prevention & Treatment of Traumatic Childbirth (PATTCh) was founded in October 2007 by Phyllis Klaus LMFT, LMSW and Penny Simkin PT with a mission to bring awareness to the harmful effects of a traumatic birth experience on birthing families, communities and professionals.

After publishing their seminal book in the field, When Survivors Give Birth: Understanding and Healing the Effects of Early Sexual Abuse on Childbearing Women in January 2004, these pioneering icons in respectful care became motivated by the growing literature about trauma, its impacts on maternal and infant physical and emotional health outcomes. They recognized the need for an organization focused on educating anyone who supported birthing families about trauma in pregnancy and birth, how to recognize, prevent and explore growing number of trauma treatment modalities.

PATTCh Original board members included Annie Kennedy MA, Teri Shilling MS, IBCLC and Sharon Storton.


Provide education and resources about prevention and treatment of traumatic birth.


Increase awareness about causes and effects of post-traumatic stress related to childbirth


Promote sensitive and effective approaches to the resolution of birth trauma


Encourage culturally appropriate and equity conscious therapeutic approaches to post-traumatic stress symptoms following childbirth


Facilitate collaboration among researchers, policy makers, medical and mental health care providers and educators


We affirm the WHO statement on the prevention and elimination of disrespect and abuse during childbirth, emphasizing the right to dignified, respectful healthcare during pregnancy and childbirth


Increase awareness of disparities in the etiologies, treatments and outcomes of traumatic childbirth based on race/ethnicity, religious affiliation, socioeconomic status, disability, sexual orientation, gender diversity, and other underserved populations

Penny Simkin PSI Address

PSI Address Penny Simkin (2011)

A task for new mothers is to put their birth experience into words – to make sense of it, to figure out what happened. It’s often a painful struggle, comes out “in pieces”, and they feel frustrated that they keep talking in circles.