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Building a National Model of Public Mental Health Preparedness and Community Resilience: Validation of a Dual-Intervention, Systems-Based Approach

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 December 2014

O. Lee McCabe
Affiliation:
Department of Mental Health and the Center for Public Health Preparedness, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland
Natalie L. Semon
Affiliation:
Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Center for Public Health Preparedness, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland
Carol B. Thompson
Affiliation:
Johns Hopkins Biostatistics Center, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland
Jeffrey M. Lating
Affiliation:
Loyola University Maryland, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland
George S. Everly Jr
Affiliation:
Center for Public Health Preparedness, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland
Charlene J. Perry
Affiliation:
Kent County Health Department, Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Chestertown, Maryland
Suzanne Straub Moore
Affiliation:
Shrewsbury Parish, Episcopal Diocese of Easton, Maryland
Adrian M. Mosley
Affiliation:
Office of Community Health, Johns Hopkins Health System, Baltimore, Maryland.
Jonathan M. Links
Affiliation:
Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Center for Public Health Preparedness, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Abstract

Objective

Working within a series of partnerships among an academic health center, local health departments (LHDs), and faith-based organizations (FBOs), we validated companion interventions to address community mental health planning and response challenges in public health emergency preparedness.

Methods

We implemented the project within the framework of an enhanced logic model and employed a multi-cohort, pre-test/post-test design to assess the outcomes of 1-day workshops in psychological first aid (PFA) and guided preparedness planning (GPP). The workshops were delivered to urban and rural communities in eastern and midwestern regions of the United States. Intervention effectiveness was based on changes in relevant knowledge, skills, and attitudes (KSAs) and on several behavioral indexes.

Results

Significant improvements were observed in self-reported and objectively measured KSAs across all cohorts. Additionally, GPP teams proved capable of producing quality drafts of basic community disaster plans in 1 day, and PFA trainees confirmed upon follow-up that their training proved useful in real-world trauma contexts. We documented examples of policy and practice changes at the levels of local and state health departments.

Conclusions

Given appropriate guidance, LHDs and FBOs can implement an effective and potentially scalable model for promoting disaster mental health preparedness and community resilience, with implications for positive translational impact.(Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2014;8:511-526)

Type
Original Research
Copyright
Copyright © Society for Disaster Medicine and Public Health, Inc. 2014 

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