The new Responder Assist website houses a range of resources that emergency workers and those supporting or treating them may find useful. Resources include a set of handy downloadable fact sheets that can be viewed online or printed out and kept nearby for ease of access.
At its core, the Responder Assist team's mission is to improve mental health outcomes for emergency workers in Victoria. The Specialist Network of Clinicians (SNC) was created to support this mission. Together with the Responder Assist clinic, the SNC forms a key strategic pillar that enables specialised mental health treatment for emergency workers. So what exactly is the SNC? Clinicians that are part of the SNC have specialised training and extensive experience in treating mental health issues in the emergency services sector. They engage in ongoing training and supervision to ensure that they are up to date with the latest developments in research and evidence-based trauma treatments for emergency workers.
Are you an emergency worker, or do you form part of an emergency worker’s support network? You can contact the Responder Assist clinic hotline service on 1800 329 191 Monday – Friday, 9 am – 5 pm. This confidential and independent service provides treatment by specialist clinicians trained in working with emergency services personnel who have experienced trauma. Accessing the service is straightforward, and those who need help can be referred by the health professional treating them, or an emergency worker can refer themselves. Read on to find out what to expect when you call the hotline.
Responder Assist provides an assessment and treatment service to ensure emergency workers can access care that is tailored to suit their needs. Alongside this, the Responder Assist service also provides training and support to mental health clinicians who treat emergency workers. Research is already underway to help ensure that the Responder Assist clinical service is continually improving and meeting the needs of emergency workers and the practitioners supporting them. Two new studies have been designed to gather insights from clinicians and emergency workers.
The COVID-19 pandemic has tested us physically, socially, and psychologically, and having to rely on coping strategies and support networks has been overwhelming for many of us, and the strain has been particularly great for some of the most marginalised people in our community. Phoenix Australia is working with women from marginalised communities who want to help their communities recover, using the Skills for Life Adjustment and Resilience (SOLAR) program.
Emergency services workers may attend car accidents, suicides, bushfires or family violence incidents—they enter a high-risk industry for mental health injury,” says Tim Peck, Senior Specialist Police and Emergency Services at Phoenix Australia. When they join that industry, they need to focus on their own mental health. Read more.
Practitioners supporting Victorian emergency service workers with mental health concerns can join a new Community of Practice. In partnership with the Mental Health Practitioners’ Network (MHPN), Responder Assist is creating a new Community of Practice for practitioners working with emergency services workers across Victoria. Read more.
After more than two years of working through the COVID-19 pandemic, many healthcare workers continue to face unprecedented levels of exhaustion, stress and frustration. As well as the sheer volume of work and the relentless demand for services, during the pandemic, our healthcare workers have been confronted with a range of moral stressors that can challenge their personal sense of right and wrong or professional ethics. Read more.