pastel by PattyRice,

References and Resources

Learn more about Psychological First Aid (PFA). 

Did you know that the SF Dept of Public Health funds free PFA trainings? 

To schedule a class in PFA, email the SF Dept of Public Health at or call (415) 558-5991.


Akil II, Bakari. (2009). How the Navy Seals Increased Passing Rates. Psychology Today.

American Psychological Association. The Road to Resilience.

Brown, L.M., Bruce, M.L., Hyer, K., et. Al. (2009). A Pilot Study Evaluating the Feasibility of Psychological First Aid for Nursing Home Residents. Clinical Gerontology. Vol 32(3). Pg 293-308.

Brown, L.M., Hyer, K. Psychological First Aid: Field Operations Guide for Nursing Homes, April, 2008.

Examined Existence. How to be Mentally Tough Like a Navy Seal.

Galea, S. Nandi, A., & Vlahov, D. (July 2005). The Epidemiology of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder after Disasters. Epidemiology Review. Vol. 27 (1) pg 78-91.

Kenardy, J., De Young, A., Brocque, R., & March, S. ( 2011). Childhood Trauma reaction: A Guide for Teachers from Preschool to Year 12. University of Queensland.

McCabe, O.L., Everly, G., S., Brown, L.M., et al. (2014). Psychological First Aid: A Consensus-Derived, Empirically Supported, Competency-Based Training Model. American Journal of Public Health Vol.104(4). Pg. 621-628. Active Listening: Hear What People are Really Saying.

Najavits LM. “Seeking Safety”: A Treatment Manual for PTSD and Substance Abuse Guilford Press, 2002.

National Association of Social Workers: Massachusetts Chapter. Verbal De-Escalation Techniques.

Oriol, W. Psychosocial Issues for Older Adults in Disasters. A Guide for Health and Mental Health Professionals. Washington, DC: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Mental Health Services, Emergency Services and Disaster Relief Branch; 1999.

Preparing Hospitals and Clinics for the Psychological Consequences of a Terrorist Incident or Other Public Health Emergency. 

Ray, S.L., et al. (2013). Compassion Satisfaction, Compassion Fatigue, Work Life Conditions, and Burnout Among Frontline Mental health Care Professionals. Traumatology 19(4). Pg255-267.

Rettner, R. (2013). Hurricane Sandy’s Toll on Health. Live Science Website.

SAMHSA. Tips for Managing and Preventing Stress. A Guide for Emergency and Disaster Response Workers.

Vankawala, H. (2005). A Doctor's Message from Katrina's Front Lines.

Mobile Resources

Apps related to disaster psychology

Apps related to personal preparedness and response

SAMHSA DTC Free Courses Online for First Responders

  • Creating Safe Scenes Training Course
    This course is designed to help police, fire, and emergency medical services personnel respond to calls involving someone experiencing a mental health and/or substance use (behavioral health) crisis. Creating Safe Scenes presents information about mental illnesses, substance use disorders, and trauma; offers guidance on de-escalating scenes with an individual in crisis; provides tips for connecting people with resources in their community; and identifies resources for learning more about these topics.
  • Taking Care of Our Own
    Taking Care of Our Own is a free online course that provides law enforcement officers with a foundational behavioral health skill set to better understand and address the stressors that are unique to law enforcement. Viewers will learn to recognize signs and symptoms of stress, depression, posttraumatic stress disorder, and suicidal thoughts and actions. This course will suggest ways to develop and build resiliency and offer tips on where and how to seek help, if it is needed.