Today’s Solutions: December 05, 2021

Experts have predicted a significant rise in anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues in the wake of the pandemic. Isolation, combined with health concerns, social justice frustrations, and economic uncertainty has taken a toll on all of us, and some friends and family may need extra support over the coming months. To help people become better mental health supporters, Johns Hopkins University is now offering a free online course in psychological first aid

The course has a 4.8/5 rating from the nearly 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. 

We all want to help in times of need, but knowing where to start when it comes to mental health issues can be difficult. For more resources, check out our article on creating a company culture that supports mental health. And, if you take the Johns Hopkins course, let us know what you think of it!

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