During a Crisis—Early Interventions

Early crisis intervention requires rapid responses, assessment, and intervention. Your crisis plan should include information about the demographics of the region, including numbers of people with mental health and physical considerations, approximate number of children and elderly, and information on other special populations. With this information in hand, the initial assessment during a crisis is focused on immediate client needs and physical safety. A survivor’s previous crisis experience or other pre-existing psychological or physical conditions should be included. Aspects of crisis intervention that differ from therapy include short or brief interventions or therapy involving problem-solving techniques. Gathering information about a client’s social systems is important for the client’s safety and support for problem-solving. Also, in most types of crises, interventions taken by counselors are more directive than they would normally be with individual clients. Referrals may be made for housing, clothing, food, and other basic essentials for living. Other early interventions, such case management, include needs assessment, care planning (such as housing), implementation, and regular review. These referral issues are crucial because, depending upon the scope of the crisis, survivors may not be able to return to work or to their homes for an extended period of time.

Choose a natural disaster other than Hurricane Katrina, and research the demographics for the area where the disaster occurred. Think about the populations affected by the natural disaster you chose as you review the following materials.

To prepare for this Discussion:

Review Chapters 5, 8, and 13 in your course text, Crisis Intervention Strategies, paying particular attention to the various types of interventions associated with different populations.

Review the article, “Integrating Treatment of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Substance Use Disorder,” focusing on the methods of and rational for integrating PTSD and substance use disorder interventions.

Review the article, “The Monsters in My Head: Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and the Child Survivor of Sexual Abuse,” and think about the complications and dynamics added to a recent crisis when childhood sexual abuse is in the client’s history.

Review the article, “Validity of the Suicide Assessment Checklist in an Emergency Crisis Center” and consider how assessing for suicide is made even more complex during and after a crisis situation.

Review the article, “Risk Factors for Suicidality Among Clients with Schizophrenia,” and again think about how mental illness might contribute to suicidality during and after a crisis situation.

Review the article, “Predictors of Depression and Anxiety Among International Students,” and consider additional stress factors for this population.

Now concentrate more closely on the natural disaster you chose and think about early interventions related to PTSD in children, adults, and special populations and how they might contribute to stabilization of survivors.

With these thoughts in mind:

Post a (200 Word APA Format) brief description of the natural disaster you chose. Then provide three PTSD-related early interventions that might contribute to the stabilization of survivors in the specific natural disaster you chose. Explain how and why they might work.