Establishing Mechanisms to Help First Responders to Cope with Stress after Incidents

First responders play a significant role in attending to emergency situations. They respond fast with the intention of helping to reduce the negative consequences caused by the emergency. Following such emergencies, inquiries and reviews may be conducted to analyze the causes and effects of the emergency. Given the traumatic experience associated with most of these emergencies, inquiries into the incidents may cause further strain and stress for first responders. These strains include increased media attention, which worsens the strained family relations. The media usually exposes the first responders to public inquiry, which at times leads to inaccurate information being given to the public.

Such information may result in more stress for the first responders, thus emphasizing the need for strategies that can help them deal with such situations. In addition, any action by first responders that affect negatively on the incident causes more stress during post-incident reviews. Therefore, first responders require support from the organization to overcome the stress associated with their work. Crisis intervention programs also help in reducing strains, while peer support cannot be ignored.

Reducing strain and stress for first responders in post-incident inquiry or review: Suggestions for change
First responders play a significant role in attending to emergencies. They respond fast with the intention of helping to reduce the negative consequences caused by the emergency. Following such emergencies, inquiries and reviews may be conducted to analyze the causes and effects of the emergency. Given the traumatic experience associated with most of these emergencies, inquiries into the incidents may influence negatively on the first responders. This occurs when the inquiries get prolonged, thus increasing posttraumatic stress of the responders, and other strains associated with traumatic events. The media, for example, may expose the first responders to public inquiry, which at times leads to inaccurate information.

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