Monday, May 23, 2011

Psychosocial support in Missouri with 100+ deaths and counting

Listening to the news and watching TV news  this days is like watching a horror movie: tornadoes, floods, conflicts and the little gal and her children trying to survive. The psychosocial consequences of a disaster of the magnitude of the Missouri tornadoes is very difficult to assess. We know that the majority of the disaster affected folks will experience transitional distress. The good news is that a majority of folks will show a number of reactions to included resilience, a desire to re-establish "place", and an improvement in their community relationships.

Hobfoll (2009) suggests that there are five essential elements that facilitate recovery: (1) a sense of safety, promoting calm, promoting a sense of collective efficacy, promoting connectedness and promoting hope (p. 223).

The first responders, emergency management, the media, and the family members can join together at this time to strengthen the safety nets, listen, and plan for a day in the future when things will be back to a semblance of what they were prior to the disaster.

Joseph O. Prewitt Diaz, PhD

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