Training people to build personal resilience before experiencing a potentially traumatic situation could help reduce incidences of post-traumatic stress among first responders, concludes a recent research project by the Justice Institute of British Columbia.
The study, “Building Personal Resilience in Paramedic Students,” involved 81 paramedic students who completed a survey measuring personal resilience before completing an online resiliency training course followed by practicum experiences out in the field on ambulances and in hospital emergency departments. They then repeated the resiliency survey. Their resiliency score increased by 23.3 per cent.
The course has since been revised to more broadly target all first responders including firefighters, sheriffs, corrections workers and police. It is being made available free of charge to JIBC paramedic students on a voluntary basis as part of further research to determine whether the original results can be replicated. Ultimately, the goal is to make the online course available for free to all first responders and people who work in potentially-traumatic environments, such as emergency dispatchers and disaster relief workers, anywhere in the world.
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