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Georgia's Disaster Mental Health Training Program

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All of Georgia’s state sponsored disaster mental health courses are free of charge. These courses are paid for by the Georgia Department of Public Health and delivered in partnership with the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities. Funding for the training is through the Georgia Healthcare Preparedness Program through a grant from the US Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response.

Building Emotional Resilience For Disaster Response Workers

Emotional Resilience is the ability of people to cope with stress and catastrophe. People who work in the field of emergency response are susceptible to extreme stress and the negative impact of those reactions. The skills taught in the course will help responders develop techniques that will assist them in dealing with daily life and be better prepared for more challenging times. Building Emotional Resilience for Disaster Response Workers was adapted from training developed for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and it is designed to teach disaster response workers how to cope with the stress associated with disaster response, how to assist their co-workers and how to provide emotional support to the public.

Disaster Mental Health Field Response Training

The Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities, in partnership with the Department of Public Health, offers free training in Disaster Mental Health Field Response. This training covers the following topics: A short segment on NIMS, the biology of stress and its impact on behavior, initial disaster mental health response, needs assessment and the FEMA Crisis Counseling Program, information on psychological first aid interventions, triage assessment and referral, and self-care. This is a very interactive training that concludes with an exercise that simulates a disaster shelter. The target audience includes: community hospital and Public Health staff, volunteers (community and MRCs), state mental health system personnel, EMA, first responders, risk communicators, Red Cross, and independent professional mental health providers.

TracieASPR TRACIE - Healthcare Emergency Preparedness Information Gateway - 

Brought to you by HHS ASPR, the Technical Resources, Assistance Center, and Information Exchange (ASPR TRACIE) was created to meet the information and technical assistance needs of regional ASPR staff, healthcare coalitions, healthcare entities, healthcare providers, emergency managers, public health practitioners, and others working in disaster medicine, healthcare system preparedness, and public health emergency preparedness.

American Red Cross Volunteer Training

The American Red Cross provides FREE disaster training for all volunteers. Trainings are both online and in-person depending on the course.

American Red Cross Disaster Mental Health Training

The American Red Cross offers training in disaster mental health. All participants must hold a current Georgia License as a clinical psychologist (PSY), licensed clinical social worker (LCSW), licensed professional counselor (LPC), or a Georgia Educator Certificate as a School Psychologist or a School Counselor; a state license and a bachelor’s degree (BSN) as a registered nurse and American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) certification for psychiatric and mental health nursing to include RN-BC or PMHNP-BC or PMHCNS-BC. For information go the American Red Cross, Georgia Region website at

National Incident Management

The National Incident Management System (NIMS) is a systematic, proactive approach to guide departments and agencies at all levels of government, nongovernmental organizations, and the private sector to work together seamlessly and manage incidents involving all threats and hazards—regardless of cause, size, location, or complexity—in order to reduce loss of life, property and harm to the environment. Free on-line training in NIMS is available Here. It is recommended that all responders take Independent Study (IS) 100.B (Introduction to Incident Command System, ICS 100) and IS 700.a (National Incident Management System [NIMS] An Introduction).

Psychological First Aid

Psychological First Aid (PFA) is an evidence-informed modular approach to help children, adolescents, adults, and families in the immediate aftermath of disaster and terrorism. PFA is designed to reduce the initial distress caused by traumatic events and to foster short- and long-term adaptive functioning and coping. This course also includes segments on responder preparedness and self-care. PFA was developed through a partnership between the National Child Traumatic Stress Network and the National Center for PTSD. PFA has been adapted for particular populations and service providers and State of Georgia provides training in following models:
Psychological First Aid
Psychological First Aid for Community Religious Professionals
Psychological First Aid for Medical Reserve Corps
There is also a free on-line version available for independent study. For more information about PFA visit this link.

The NCTSN has training on Psychological First Aid here

SAMHSA-DTAC Online Training Courses

Medical Counter Measures Disaster Mental Health

The activation of Georgia’s Strategic National Stockpile Program (SNS) may cause stress in all persons involved. Therefore, it is essential for SNS planners to incorporate disaster mental health services in their plans and for responders to be familiar with disaster mental health and how they can implement strategies to reduce the stress associated with SNS activation. This course teaches participants to identify the signs and symptoms of stress, strategies to provide self-care, support peers/co-workers, and provide disaster mental health services for the public during SNS activation. The target audience for this training is Public Health Districts and their SNS planning and response partners and volunteers.