Future disaster responder mental health Essay Sample
From the research question—What policy updates would best improve federal response operations’ mental and/or behavioral health force protection measures within the US Department of Health and Human Services? —three hypotheses emerged. To answer the hypotheses, this project enlisted a trio of methodologies, including research, subject matter expert interviews and systematic literature reviews.
By observing the ensuing data portrait, policy updates and recommendations related to increased quality of leadership, regulatory compliance and simple, low-cost interventions to mitigate federal responders’ psychological trauma exposure, would become clear. The ultimate goal of the practicum project was to provide draft HHS policy updates to the Practicum Precept for submission to the Assistant Secretary for potential approval, signature and subsequent publication.
The goal for the paper is to offer recommendations for future disaster responder mental health research and policy updates, with an aim to build resilience within the federal disaster responder population by improving training accountability, leadership quality measures and overall mental/behavioral health education. Hypothesis One. Federal response operations leaders fail to fully implement established policy aimed at mitigating effects of psychological stress and/or trauma in their subordinate responder population.
To evaluate this hypothesis, examined perceived success of policy implementation from the perspective of federal behavioral/mental health force protection responders and policy developers from varied federal agencies and partners (subject matter experts). During the practicum project, I researched current federal response operations mental and behavioral health force protection policy and conducted semi-structured, in-depth interviews with several federal operations behavioral health force protection responders (current and recent past) as well as agency partners to discuss their real-world experience with existing HHS policy guidance.
During the interviews, recommendations for policy updates were collected based on their subject matter expertise. Finally, results from the research and real-world findings were analyzed and summarized. Hypothesis Two. Effects of responder psychological trauma can be mitigated with strong leadership who fully implement and comply with established HHS response operations policy. Specific Aim Conduct an evaluation of current literature to determine the importance of perceived leadership effectiveness, capability and support on mitigating and/or reducing psychological stress and/or trauma within the responder (or similar ) population.
Methods Conduct a database search in SCOPUS using the following keywords: Inclusion criteria for the initial search include original research studies and study review articles published in English language between January 2004 and July 2014. Next, a search through titles and abstracts for inclusion criteria will lead to retrieval and examination of entire documents for applicability.
Preliminary results show that perceived leadership ability and organizational support is positively associated with psychological resilience in combat veteran and disaster responder populations. Hypothesis Three. Effects of responder psychological trauma can be mitigated by employing evidence-based or -informed interventions throughout the deployment cycle. Specific Aim Conduct a systematic evaluation of current literature to determine what interventions are effective at mitigating and/or reducing psychological stress and/or trauma in the emergency responder (or similar) population.
Methods Conduct a database search in PubMed using the following keywords: Inclusion criteria for the initial search include original research studies and study review articles published in English language between January 2004 and July 2014. Next, a search through titles and abstracts for inclusion criteria will lead to retrieval and examination of entire documents for applicability.
Secondary inclusion criteria include: any interventions measuring resilience (or degrees of recovery from mental illness) after exposure to situations known to cause psychological trauma; interventions delivered at any stage of deployment (i. e. , pre, during, post); subject populations working in jobs/careers where repeated exposure is a known risk. Preliminary results showed interventions focused on social support and mindfulness techniques could be effective in mitigating psychological trauma in combat veteran populations.