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  • Counseling
  • Marriage and Family Therapy
Hours: 2 Contact Hours
  • Bradley E. Belsher, MSW
  • Jennifer Housley, MS, PhD
  • Patricia Watson, PhD
Peer Reviewer(s): Lisa Baker,  PhD
Item#: C6536
Contents: 1 Course Book (80 pages)

Disaster Mental Health, 2nd Edition

Price $19.95
Item # C6536
When available, the Online Course format is included with the hard copy, eBook, or audio book formats!

Release Date: April 30, 2018

Expiration Date: April 30, 2021

Disaster mental health (DMH) interventions in the United States have become recognized as a crucial aspect of disaster response. This course provides social workers, counselors, marriage and family therapists, and psychologists—who are at the forefront of providing assistance to survivors and the communities in which they live--with information about challenges in DMH and tools needed to respond. Risk and protective factors for a number of populations, as well as the wide array of disaster mental health services are described.

2 NBCC hours will be awarded upon completion of this course.

Course Objectives

  • Describe the distinguishing elements of disasters, including types, phases, and social/community aspects.
  • Explain variations in psychosocial reactions to disasters.
  • Identify disaster mental health competencies.
  • Differentiate appropriate postdisaster psychosocial interventions.
  • Describe self-care practices for disaster mental health workers.

Bradley E. Belsher, MSW, received a master of social work degree with a specialization in health care from the Catholic University of America and a bachelor of arts degree from Georgetown University. Mr. Belsher has provided mental health counseling to a wide array of populations, including early intervention therapy to trauma survivors. Additionally, he has served as program coordinator for the Palo Alto Medical Reserve Corps, an organization that provides training in disaster mental health and psychological first aid. His research interests include disaster mental health, early intervention for trauma survivors, health psychology, and neuropsychology.

Jennifer Housley, MS, PhD, received her master’s and doctoral degrees in clinical psychology from the Pacific Graduate School of Psychology (now Palo Alto University) in Palo Alto, California. She currently works for the Veterans Administration Sierra Nevada Health Care System, where she supervises the Integrated Behavioral Health Care program. As a former fellow of the National Center on the Psychology of Terrorism, Dr. Housley has provided program development services for national organizations and served as program director and lead instructor for the Palo Alto Medical Reserve Corps. Dr. Housley has published on topics including mass-casualty disasters, trauma response, health psychology, and performance psychology. Dr. Housley’s research interests include investigating key psychological factors contributing to an individual’s ability to withstand physical and psychological discomfort in the service of goal achievement. She has received national awards and commendations for her contributions to public service psychology through research, practice, program development, training, and advocacy.

Patricia Watson, PhD, is a senior educational specialist for the National Center for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). She received her doctorate in clinical psychology from Catholic University of America. She served as assistant director of terrorism and disaster programs for the National Center for Child Traumatic Stress from 2007 to 2010 and as an assistant professor of psychiatry at Dartmouth Medical School from 1999 to 2010. She has collaborated with federal working groups to create publications for public and mental health interventions following terrorism, disaster, and pandemic flu. In collaboration with authors from the National Child Traumatic Stress Network and National Center for PTSD, she has coauthored the Psychological First Aid (PFA) Field Guide and the Skills for Psychological Recovery (SPR) Manual. In collaboration with authors from the Department of Defense and the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation, she has coauthored the Combat Operational Stress First Aid (COSFA) Field Guide and Curbside Manner and Stress First Aid for Firefighters and Emergency Services Personnel, as well as created versions for law enforcement professionals and rail workers. She has coedited three books on disaster behavioral health interventions and numerous articles, guidance documents, and chapters on disaster mental health, combat and operational stress, early intervention, and resilience.

Dr. Lisa Baker is an associate professor in the Department of Social Work at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She earned her PhD in social work from the University of Georgia, MSW from Florida International University, and BA in psychology from the University of Georgia. Dr. Baker has conducted research, published, and presented in the areas of disaster preparedness, evidence-based practice, and perinatal health care. Dr. Baker has a clinical background in perinatal and pediatric health care, social work, and crisis intervention. She is the past president of the National Association of Perinatal Social Workers and is active with the psychosocial services workgroup of the National Perinatal Association. She is a disaster mental health responder, providing force protection and psychosocial services to disaster victims and team members. She has recently coauthored Disasters and Vulnerable Populations: Evidence-based Practice for the Helping Professions (Springer Publishing, 2015).

  • Courses must be completed on or before the expiration date noted in the course description above.
  • You must score 75% or higher on the final exam and complete the course evaluation to pass this course and receive a certificate of completion.
  • Through our review processes, Western Schools ensures that this course content is presented in a balanced, unbiased manner and is free from commercial influence. It is Western Schools’ policy not to accept commercial support.
  • All persons involved in the planning and development of this course have disclosed no relevant financial relationships or other conflicts of interest related to the course content.