We believe there is no health without mental health. We provide mental health and psychosocial support for healthcare workers, first responders and disaster survivors..
In this challenging time, Americares goal is simple—to protect the health and well-being of health workers so they can continue to provide their lifesaving work. Our curriculum includes evidence-based theories and practices such as:
The basics of how and when to provide psychological first aid to people impacted by a traumatic event.
Strategies for managing stress related to the overwhelming nature of the pandemic that can be applied to self-care routine —and to patients’.
Define sleep hygiene and review
the consequences of altered sleep patterns—and recognize the signs and symptoms that occur in the absence of sleep hygiene.
Learn about stigma, discrimination and implicit bias in the age of COVID-19.
For more information about scheduling—or Americares mental health programming at large—please email us at email@example.com.
Americares recently developed a cutting-edge Disaster Risk Reduction and Mental Health integrative program that offers psychological debriefing, organizational resilience support and training to health centers in California communities at risk for disaster. Participating health centers receive psychosocial support and technical advice from Americares mental health and preparedness experts. And staff at participating health centers learn how to build resilience and address provider fatigue, the mental health of providers and disaster survivors as well as overall preparedness.
“This workshop gave me time to rest and find myself again. The routine these days is very intense: work, home, family—and many times, we forget about ‘being.’ The team reflections gave me peace of mind.”Workshop Participant
When repeated earthquakes rocked Puerto Rico over weeks in January 2020, local health officials asked Americares to conduct mental health training sessions for health workers. And when the coronavirus pandemic reached the island, Americares pivoted and began training local health workers in COVID-19-related mental health services.
Americares training and education gives health workers the knowledge and skills to help them stay safe, calm and healthy—and treat patients during the pandemic.
Our training helps providers identify and manage their patients’ COVID-19-related mental health concerns, while also giving health workers resources to identify and address their own mental health needs. Topics include grief and loss, Psychological First Aid, Difficult Issues in the Workplace and stigma and discrimination associated with COVID-19. Americares has also provided one-on-one crisis management support sessions for health workers who need additional support after the training, with referrals for longer-term support if needed.
After providing health care amid bombing and violence, health workers can experience stress and trauma, putting them at risk for illness. And providers caring for patients who have experienced violence or stress are at higher risk of vicarious trauma. Americares trains medical staff caring for Syrians in Syria and in bordering countries to recognize and alleviate signs of stress in themselves and their co-workers.
In Jordan, Americares continues to work with the Royal Health Awareness Society to add mental health services to an existing chronic disease program. Now Syrian refugees—and Jordanians—can better manage their stress and, consequently, their chronic health conditions.
In Colombia and El Salvador, Americares provides clinical mental health services for our patients. Our providers treat a variety of health issues, including anxiety, stress and loss.
At Americares Colombia clinics, Venezuelans driven by violence, instability and extreme food and medicine shortages face risks to their mental well-being. Our providers ensure patients receive mental health support. From August 16, 2019 through October 1, 2021 Americares conducted more than 500,000 patient consultations. Approximately 16 percent of those were focused on mental health issues, such as PTSD, depression and anxiety.
And in the Philippines, Americares trained thousands of health workers to provide psychosocial support services to survivors facing trauma and loss after a deadly typhoon in 2013. We also provide psychotherapeutic medications to local health departments and include mental health support in our own emergency responses.
The increasing economic insecurity and the higher rate of suicide in Malawi during the Pandemic were strong indicators of a need to develop a mental health response. In a country that only has 5 psychiatrists to serve 16 million people and where only a handful of nurses working at the only public-funded psychiatric hospital have mental health training, a needs assessment revealed a significant need for a mental health and psychosocial training initiative. The team established training of the trainers for “mental health specialists” followed by training at district, health center, and community levels of 106 health workers, 80 community leaders and 30 health workers.
“The training is very important to myself, as an individual, and to my family. I want to help myself and then help the community.” — a training participant
After a disaster, you can clearly see the homes and health centers that have been damaged or destroyed and start the work of repairing or replacing them. While physical damage and losses can be clearly seen after a disaster, there is a whole other world of devastation that often remains unseen and supported: as community organizer Gopal Aryal, stated after the 2015 Nepal earthquake, “People see broken houses, they don’t see broken hearts”.
That’s why in Puerto Rico, Jordan, Texas, Nepal, Japan, Philippines and other hard hit communities around the world, Americares responded to the mental as well as the physical health needs of people in crisis. Working with local communities, we strive to enhance pre-existing health care systems and train health care workers to identify signs of stress and trauma after a disaster and then work to assess, collaborate, and ultimately co-create programs that are sustainable, culturally competent, resilient and effectively serve the community.
After the 2011 tsunami and nuclear disaster in Japan, Americares launched a series of mental health programs, including a gardening project in the Fukushima Prefecture to improve the psychological and emotional well-being of survivors. “They are enjoying moments of laughter and quiet moments listening to the breeze, cicadas, and birds. It’s wonderful to see before our very eyes what a difference we’re making.”…Americares country director in Japan.
When a devastating earthquake rocked Nepal in 2015, Americares worked with local organizations to create a drama-based theater program to reduce isolation and destigmatize mental health issues. And in the Philippines, Americares trained thousands of health workers to provide mental health services to survivors facing trauma and loss after a deadly typhoon in 2013.
Today, Americares is committed to increasing access to care and treatment, so patients around the world can lead healthy, productive lives. Just last year, Americares provided enough medicine to fill nearly 668,000 prescriptions for behavioral health patients around the world.