What Is ISTSS?

ISTSS Mission Statement
ISTSS is an international, interdisciplinary professional organization that promotes advancement and exchange of knowledge about traumatic stress.

This knowledge includes:

  • Understanding the scope and consequences of traumatic exposure
  • Preventing traumatic events and ameliorating their consequences
  • Advocating for the field of traumatic stress

The International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies was founded in 1985 for professionals to share information about the effects of trauma. ISTSS is dedicated to the discovery and dissemination of knowledge about policy, program and service initiatives that seek to reduce traumatic stressors and their immediate and long-term consequences.

ISTSS provides a forum for the sharing of research, clinical strategies, public policy concerns and theoretical formulations on trauma in the United States and around the world. We are the premier society for the exchange of professional knowledge and expertise in the field.

Members of ISTSS include psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, nurses, counselors, researchers, administrators, advocates, journalists, clergy and others with an interest in the study and treatment of traumatic stress.

ISTSS members come from a variety of clinical and non-clinical settings around the world, including public and private health facilities, private practice, universities, non-university research foundations and many others.

Activities we are involved in:

Research & Resources: ISTSS publishes a research journal, Journal of Traumatic Stress, for professionals to share new research in the field. The research is reviewed anonymously by experts in the field and judged to be leading research. A quarterly newsletter, Traumatic StressPoints, features organizational news as well as news and features of importance to the field.
Meetings: ISTSS presents an annual international conference, the largest forum for sharing new information on the field.

Professional & Public Education: ISTSS is the only society to have published a thorough, science-based assessment of the memory of trauma that integrates clinical and research understanding. A consumer-oriented pamphlet has also been developed.

Treatment Guidelines: ISTSS develops and promotes treatment guidelines on the state of the art of all types of treatment.

Worldwide Networking & Support: ISTSS works with the United Nations to provide education and resources to guide practice and public policy in countries torn by exposure to traumatic events. ISTSS also promotes excellence in international training for mental health professionals and others who treat trauma victims.

Promote Excellence & Innovation: ISTSS recognizes excellence with annual awards to researchers, clinicians, and outstanding professionals in the field. ISTSS provides training for student professionals and help them gain expertise in the field.

To learn more about ISTSS, read Origins and Development of the ISTSS, written by former ISTSS President Sandra Bloom, MD.