Psychological Services

Recovery and Reconstruction

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Recovery and Reconstruction

Psychological service personnel need similar follow up to other service personnel for entrenched or delayed maladaptive responses. Burnout,
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, secondary traumatic stress disorder,
vicarious traumatisation and other biological, psychological and social symptoms and illnesses and defences are assessed in relation to the disaster and other traumatic events, earlier vulnerabilities and subsequent stressors.
Personnel must have available, according to need,
supervision, debriefs, support, mentoring, morale enhancing measures and personal counselling and therapy like other service providers.
The experiences of helping others and of being helped oneself may enable psychological service personnel to meld their disaster experiences with their everyday professional work in new creative ways, both individually and institutionally.

Research into the effects of disasters and the benefits of various psychological assessments and interventions is critical to the continued development of best practice in service delivery. In particular, sound research contributes to the development of the knowledge base and will inform intervention at all levels.

One goal of research may be the development of minimum national data on the profile of psychological responses in Australia and development of standardised and comparable assessment, intervention and outcome measures. Nevertheless, research must be well considered and not interfere with current recovery. The following principles are offered as a guide in any consideration of research in the disaster recovery area:

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