Lakewood, CO: Behavioral Health Knowledge Enhancement Working Group
The Wide Area Recovery and Resiliency Program (WARRP) Behavioral Health Knowledge Enhancement Working Group was held on August 27, 2012 in Lakewood, CO.
The Knowledge Enhancement Working Group aimed to connect local behavioral health professionals and emergency management professionals to discuss strategies for coordinating behavioral health services after a wide urban area event during all phases of recovery, especially services that normalize feelings of those affected, reassure survivors, and help victims find effective ways of coping with their ongoing stress.
- Identify the key behavioral health recovery issues after a wide urban area event.
- Identify the process to connect individuals of the impacted community to behavioral health and mental health resiliency services available after a wide urban area event.
- Advance the understanding of resiliency for responders and relief workers.
- Monitor the psycho-social impacts on the affected community over time.
- Fund policy for behavioral health services during all phases of recovery.
The working group discussed possible ways to coordinate responses and identified a communication challenge for behavioral health professionals and emergency managers, organizational and volunteer group vetting challenges, as well as a deficiency in the Incident Command Structure to notify behavioral health professionals at the onset of a disaster operation. A variety of representatives from local, regional, and state organizations and agencies partipated in the working group.