Identifying Human Trafficking in Texas: What Physicians Need to Know

This course meets all required Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) Human Trafficking Training Standards and is approved by HHSC in accordance with House Bill 2059 (2019).

Human trafficking, also known as “modern-day slavery,” is a global human rights atrocity that affects individuals of every age, nationality, gender, and sexual orientation. Although the media have directed more attention to the problem recently, forms of human trafficking have existed throughout human history. At its core, human trafficking involves deception, manipulation, and abuse. During their time in captivity, victims of human trafficking often are subject to forms of trauma that leave them vulnerable to a variety of medical problems. Physicians and health care providers are in a unique position to interact with victims as they seek medical care and can serve as powerful advocates for this patient population.

Learning Objectives


Upon completion of this enduring material, participants should be able to:

  1. Recognize the elements of patient medical history, physical, and behaviors that suggest potential human trafficking;
  2. Screen patients for human trafficking; and
  3. Take appropriate action with patients and authorities in cases of suspected human trafficking.

Additional Information

The Texas Medical Association
State Relevance: 
Course summary
Available credit: 
  • 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit
Course opens: 
Course expires: 
Nonmember cost:
Member cost:

Melinda McNiel-Lopez, MD

Melinda Lopez, MD, MPH, is the reproductive medicine director at the Center for Women’s Health at People’s Community Clinic in Austin and a member of the Texas Human Trafficking Prevention Taskforce.  She earned a dual MD/MPH degree at the University of North Carolina (UNC) medical school in conjunction with the Department of Nutrition at the UNC Gillings School of Global Health. During her obstetrician-gynecology residency at The University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School, she founded a clinic for survivors of human trafficking and worked to raise awareness of the topic among physicians and health care providers.

Melinda Garcia Schalow, MD

Melinda Schalow, MD, is the clinical assistant professor at the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at West Texas Southern Region and the medical director and telehealth clinical director of managed care at Texas Tech University Health Science Center.

AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ (Enduring)  
The Texas Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Texas Medical Association designates this enduring activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

On select courses, the Texas Medical Association requires physician to complete 70-percent of the test questions correctly to receive credit for this course.

See TMA’s Web Site Privacy Statement
This course has been designated for 1 credit(s) of education in medical ethics and/or professional responsibility.

ACGME/ABMS Competencies
This program addresses the following desirable physician attributes:
Patient Care and Procedural Skills

Available Credit

  • 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit


Nonmember cost:
Member cost:
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This course is offered through The Texas Medical Association. 

To take this course you will be redirected to The Texas Medical Association's website. You must login or create an account with The Texas Medical Association in order to complete this activity. 

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Human TraffickingHuman Trafficking Prevention