Johns Hopkins is offering a free online course in psychological first aid | The Optimist Daily
Today’s Solutions: June 21, 2024

The pandemic caused a significant rise in anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues. Isolation, combined with health concerns, social justice frustrations, and economic uncertainty took its toll on all of us. With this in mind, researchers from  Johns Hopkins University started offering a free online course in psychological first aid, allowing people to better prepared for their loved ones in their times of need.

The course received a 4.8/5 rating from the 8,000 people who’ve reviewed it and is taught by psychologist George S. Everly, PhD, who teaches students his RAPID model for dealing with emergency mental health situations: Reflective listening, Assessment of needs, Prioritization, Intervention, and Disposition.

Becoming a reflective listener involves repeating back things a person has said to you to assure them they have been heard. The Assessment of Needs portion trains participants on how to rapidly determine the severity of the person’s needs to best connect them with help. This is critical for determining whether someone just needs a shoulder to lean on or more professional help. A significant portion of the course is also dedicated to making a plan for further action to make sure the interaction is followed up with necessary action.

If you join the 200,000 people already enrolled in a psychological first aid training program, the course is broken down into manageable chunks, from 30 minutes to 2 hours.

This specific course is designed with years of crisis and natural disaster experience in mind. It is designed for periods of great uncertainty and is proven to safely transition someone out of crisis temporarily until they can access sustained mental health resources.

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