Building national capacity for child and family disaster mental health research

Betty Pfefferbaum, J. Brian Houston, Gilbert Reyes, Alan M. Steinberg, Robert S. Pynoos, John A. Fairbank, Melissa J. Brymer, Carl A. Maida
2010 Professional Psychology: Research and Practice  
Disaster mental health is a burgeoning field with numerous opportunities for professional involvement in preparedness, response, and recovery efforts. Research is essential to advance professional understanding of risk and protective factors associated with disaster outcomes; to develop an evidence base for acute, intermediate, and long-term mental health approaches to address child, adult, family, and community disaster-related needs; and to inform policy and guide national and local disaster
more » ... reparedness, response, and recovery programs. To address the continued need for research in this field, we created the Child and Family Disaster Research Training and Education (DRT) program, which is focused specifically on enhancing national capacity to conduct disaster mental health research related to children, a population particularly vulnerable to disaster trauma. This paper describes the structure and organization of the DRT program, reviews the training curriculum, discusses implementation and evaluation of the program, and reviews obstacles encountered in establishing the program. Finally, key lessons learned are reviewed for the purpose of guiding replication of the DRT model to address other areas of community mental health.
doi:10.1037/a0017056 pmid:20352081 pmcid:PMC2844088 fatcat:wv5qqi5zr5g2vjexksgr4jsnee