September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. Rates of suicide in the United States has risen and it continues to be a leading cause of death. In 2016 alone, nearly 45,000 lives were lost to suicide (CDC Report, 2018).
Please click HERE for information and resources to support suicide awareness.
Catastrophic natural disasters, such as Hurricane Florence, cause extreme disruption and can be distressful for individuals, families and communities. Those receiving assistance as well as those involved in disaster management efforts can be affected. Individual and community strength can be enhanced by interventions that address critical behavioral health issues throughout both the response and recovery phases. Ideal interventions promote the evidence-based principles of Psychological First Aid (PFA), including: safety, calming, self- and community-efficacy, social connectedness, and a sense of hope/optimism.
Click HERE for resources that provide disaster mental health information to assist families, responders, community leaders, and healthcare providers in response and recovery efforts.
Suicide is an important public health issue for our communities. Knowing how to help others gives us confidence to reach out and connect with people who seem to be hurting or having difficulties. This "5 Steps to Save a Life" resource is adapted from the National Institute of Mental Health and lists simple steps one can take that may ultimately save someone's life.
Below are pdf versions of the content on a flyer as well as folding card (suitable for printing) FREE to download and share throughout your organization and community.
This document is an ongoing continuous summary of Army STARRS and STARRS-LS publications. Army STARRS (2009-2015) was the largest and most comprehensive research project of mental health among U.S. Army Soldiers ever conducted. The project was designed to examine a broad range of risk and resilience (protective) factors across a complex set of outcomes including suicidal behaviors and associated mental health issues. Army STARRS scientists created a series of large and extensive databases with the potential to achieve groundbreaking results. These databases allow scientists to investigate a diverse combination of factors from demographic, psychological, biological, neurological, behavioral, and social domains with the goal of generating actionable findings for the Army. The project was designed using an adaptive approach which means it evolved as new information became available over the course of the project. The research team shared preliminary findings, as they became available, with senior Army leadership so the Army could apply them to its ongoing health promotion, risk reduction, and suicide prevention efforts. The work is continuing under the STARRS Longitudinal Study (STARRS-LS) which runs from 2015 to 2020.
In response to the tragic shootings at the Capital Gazette newspaper office in Maryland, the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress has created resource page with information and educational fact sheets. These resources provide disaster mental health information to assist families, responders, community leaders, and healthcare providers in response and recovery efforts. The resource page can found HERE
Dr. West presented at APA’s 2018 Annual Meeting last month in the symposium “Patients and Personal Firearms: Approaches to the Physician-Patient Conversation to Reduce Risk". For a brief summary, read Psychiatric News' coverage of the presentation click HERE
In response to the tragic shootings at the Santa Fe High School in Texas, the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress has created resource page with information and educational fact sheets. These resources provide disaster mental health information to assist families, responders, community leaders, and healthcare providers in response and recovery efforts. The resource page can found HERE
The Uniformed Services University National Center for Disaster Medicine and Public Health is proud to announce a free, eight-hour, online Disaster Health Core Curriculum for All Health Professionals intended for a wide range of health care professionals.
The course consists of eleven, 30-minute to one-hour online training lessons covering a variety of disaster health topics such as personal or family preparedness, communication, ethical and legal issues encountered in disasters, and much more. This curriculum is free and designed to be taken in pieces or as a whole to be flexible for our busy healthcare professional learner. The foundation of this curriculum is the Core Competencies for Disaster Medicine and Public Health.
In the most recent Disaster Dialogues: Perspectives from the Field, Dr. Tom Kirsch, Director of the National Center for Disaster Medicine and Public Health, interviews Dr. Brian Flynn, Associate Director of CSTS and an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at USU, about his current role and his disaster mental health experiences throughout his career. Please click here for this two part series.
April is the Month of the Military Child, which serves as an opportunity to honor the sacrifices military children make on behalf of our nation. Sadly, military duty-related deaths are included in those sacrifices. Of the 15,938 U.S. military service members who died in the decade following 9/11, 85% died suddenly and violently. Such losses place military children and widowed spouses at higher risk for poorer bereavement outcomes, especially given that surviving family members are often young and separated from extended family. Please click HERE to read full post
In response to the tragic shootings at the Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress has created resource page with information and educational fact sheets. These resources provide disaster mental health information to assist families, responders, community leaders, and healthcare providers in response and recovery efforts. The resource page can found HERE.
Please register HERE if you are participating or attending.
At the request of the American Psychiatric Association (APA), Center Scientist and member of the APA Committee on the Psychiatric Dimensions of Disaster, Dr. Joshua Morganstein, developed a 1-hour continuing medical education module on "Climate Change and Disaster Mental Health". This activity provides content for healthcare and other professionals to better understand psychological and behavioral effects, vulnerable populations, evidence-based interventions, and preparedness measures with respect to climate-related disasters. The education module can be accessed HERE.
The Center has developed "US Army Culture: An Introduction for Behavioral Health Researchers" to assist researchers with understanding Army culture and how this impacts the development, conduct, and analysis of research involving soldiers and their families. The book provides information on a range of Army topics including: history and culture; understanding Active, Guard and Reserve components; key terminology and rank structure; as well as pragmatic suggestions to enhance research and related products. The book can be accessed here.
The Uniformed Services University and Veteran's Administration have partnered to open the national PTSD Brain Bank, where researchers will investigate the impact of stress, trauma and PTSD on brain tissue. This work is being conducted in order to advance the scientific knowledge of PTSD, particularly the identification of PTSD biomarkers. Recent media coverage of the Brain Bank, it's relevance and potential impacts can be found here.