Monday, January 4, 2010

From Crisis to Recovery: Strategic Planning for Response, Resilience, and Recovery

George W. Doherty, MS, LPC
Rocky Mountain DMH Institute Press (2009)
ISBN 9781615990153
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views


Between war, natural disasters and pandemic illnesses, such as the Swine Flu (H1N1), worldwide we are currently experiencing a tremendous amount of stress-inducing events.  The proper training of first responders and mental health professionals is critical.  Mental health response has been left out of most emergency response models for national, state and local response team training.  Incorporating resilience, recovery, and proper preparation into a strategic plan is vital.  It is also very important that these professionals have an understanding of other cultures when dealing with people from them in emergency situations.
Every individual can be affected differently by a crisis situation. "From Crisis to Recovery," discusses how the community and the people in it tend to respond to and recover from disasters.  Being aware of the effects of both individual and collective trauma is important in how people will be affected. Activities taught involve preparing for, responding to, and recovering from disasters. Learning about resiliency and how it can affect the outcome of disaster induced stress and emotional trauma is very important. Stress reduction techniques are also taught.

I feel that this book is critical for people who are involved in all aspects of crisis response.  It is important for these people to acquire the valuable information that is offered here.  It is also for the responders to recognize that they too are affected by these crisis situations.  By recognizing this, and learning how to effectively handle these stressors, the responders will be able to avoid having to be hindered by the emotional trauma of the situations with which they are dealing.  This in turn will allow them to be more effective in a crisis situation and in their personal lives, avoid burn out and avoid needless suffering.  "From Crisis to Recovery" by George W. Doherty is written in a manner that not only imparts critical information, but it is also incredibly interesting to read. I highly recommend this book.

Listen to interview with George Doherty