Feature Article: Perspectives on Disaster Public Health and Disaster Behavioral Health Integration
By James M. Shultz, Ph.D., M.S.
When disaster strikes, physical consequences often can be seen immediately, and public health needs are starkly evident. Psychological consequences, on the other hand, are less visible and, historically, have been minimized or overlooked in state disaster response plans. This article discusses the importance of integrating behavioral health into disaster public health planning.
Substance Abuse Services and Planning for Times of Disaster
By Dee S. Owens, M.P.A.
Substance abuse services are an often neglected, but necessary, part of disaster planning. A response plan that enables substance abuse treatment facility staff to meet the need for substance abuse services in a time of disaster requires preparation, collaboration, and practice at the local and state levels. This article discusses the importance of learning about the special needs of substance abuse clients and the National Incident Management System. This knowledge can help any substance abuse treatment facility to plan for continuity of operations and to provide services at the time of a disaster.
The Role of Social Media in Disaster Planning
By Christian Burgess, M.S.W.
Social media offer disaster behavioral health care providers a cost-effective and creative way to easily reach advocates and consumers with messaging and services before, during, and after major events. This article discusses lessons learned from using social media to build an online community as one way to conduct disaster outreach.
Recommended Resource: SAMHSA DTAC Resources on Children and Disasters
The SAMHSA Disaster Technical Assistance Center (DTAC) is proud to announce several new resources that address the needs of one of our most vulnerable populations: children and youth. Disruption in social support networks and school systems following a disaster are among the factors that influence children's recovery. Developmental stage also affects the way children and youth cope with disasters. This issue highlights several disaster behavioral health resources that help parents and other caregivers to address concerns for children and youth.
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