Behavioral Health and Emergency Preparedness
A range of mental health and chemical abuse (behavioral health) problems may surface in the early stages of an emergency situation. These may continue to emerge among the public and among professionals who respond to an event. Addressing these concerns improves the emergency response and the health of the whole community.
- Psychological First Aid (PFA)
Helping people to reduce stress symptoms and assist in a healthy recovery following a traumatic event, natural disaster, public health emergency, or even a personal crisis.
- Minnesota Psychological First Aid Just-In-Time (Video: 11 minutes)
Video collaboration between MDH and the City of Minneapolis media department.
- Are You Stressed?
Resources for People in Disaster, Emergency or Crisis
- Psychological First Aid: A Minnesota Community Support Model
Register with U-SEEE to take this free 45-minute online training. Scroll through the list to find this course, then follow the instructions to register.
- Psychological First Aid (PowerPoint) (PDF)
Read the powerpoint, then take the tests and print the certificate.
- Tips for Disaster Responders: Understanding Historical Trauma When Responding to an Event in Indian Country (PDF)
- A Post-Deployment Guide for Emergency and Disaster Response Workers (PDF)
- Tips for Managing and Preventing Stress A Guide for Emergency Response and Public Safety Workers (PDF)
- A Post-Deployment Guide for Supervisors of Deployed Personnel (PDF)
- Managing Stress in a Public Health Emergency
Understand common stress reactions to increase your ability to cope during a public health emergency.
- Psychological First Aid for First Responders
SAMHSA tips for emergency and disaster response workers. Non-MDH link
- Psychological First Aid: Helping Victims in the Immediate Aftermath of Disaster (PDF)
Fact sheet describing the concept of "psychological first aid" and explains how to administer it.
- Self-Care Pocket Reference Guide for Emergency Response Deployment (PDF)
A guide for volunteer responders that includes pre- and post- deployment checklists and self-reflection activities. This resource was originally created for the University of Minnesota and the Minnesota Department of Health, and is now produced by Wisconsin Department of Health.
- Tips for Families of Returning Disaster Responders: Adjusting to Life at Home (PDF)
- Tips for Survivors of a Traumatic Event: What to Expect in Your Personal, Family, Work, and Financial Life
- When Terrible Things Happen
Recognizing common reactions faced by survivors, and suggesting helpful and less helpful responses.
- Alcohol, Medication, And Drug Use After A Disaster
Helping people understand and manage their use of alcohol, prescription medications, or other drugs after a disaster.
- Helping Families Deal With the Stress of Relocation After a Disaster (PDF)
ATSDR fact sheet to help family members of different ages deal with the stress of relocation.
- SAMHSA Disaster Distress Helpline and Text to Talk line
- After a Crisis: How Young Children Heal (PDF)
- Ready Wrigley Coping After a Disaster: Coloring Book (PDF)
- Being Safe After a Flood Activity Book (PDF)
- Handout for Children – Now that the flood is over, What do you do now? Tips to help yourself feel better (PDF)
- Helping Children After the Flood
Children react differently to a flood and its aftermath depending on their age, developmental level, and prior experiences.
- National Child Traumatic Stress Network
NCTSN provides education and technical assistance for parents, schools, the media and behavioral health professionals who work with traumatic stress in children.
- Community Resilience Initiatives: Community-led Initiatives in San Francisco Neighborhoods
Resilience in Communities is a website that was developed by national, state and local governments, non-profits, and community agencies to advance the interplay between interdisciplinary community resilience research and public health practice. It provides a “plan, do, improve” approve to developing community resilience.
- HHS Disaster Behavioral Health Concept of Operations (PDF)
- MN Behavioral Health Medical Reserve Corp
Statewide group of volunteer behavioral health specialists.
- Behavioral Health & Emergency Preparedness Fact Sheet (PDF)
Fact sheet discusses possible behavioral health problems that may arise during an emergency event.
- American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress
The Academy works to advance interventions for survivors of trauma. They offer publications, discussion forums, and members-only resources.
- Suicide Warning Signs (PDF)
- Suicide Prevention Program
Behavioral health resource links from Minnesota, national, international and educational sources.
- MYCepaz App - Teen guide to mental well-being
Stress management app developed by youth for youth.
- Psychological First Aid - Teen Version (Powerpoint) (PDF)
Powerpoint presentation of psychological first aid, targeted to teens.