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firemoose827

Critical Incident Stress Debriefing

20 posts in this topic

I have a question to post to the entire board, and I hope everyone takes it seriously and answers seriously. We are all family here and should help each other as much as we can. Which is what brings me to ask this question.

What would everyones feelings be towards a new forum topic dedicated to C.I.S.D, Critical Incident Stress Debriefing? I believe if we had a forum where anyone who had recently, ( or in the past) has suffered some kind of stressful event and needed a comfortable place in which to share their experiences, talk about them, and hear from other brothers/sisters who may have experienced the same thing, we can maybe make a difference and help each other through things.

Lets face it, what we do is stressful, and there is no such thing as "weakness" when it comes to one human being seeing another human being in a traumatic event, and the feelings you have for other human beings in times of tragedy. I believe this would help tremendously....there is no need to get into detail ( for all of you just DYING to scream ' HIPPA' or 'PT CONFIDENTIALITY') just an open forum for people to talk about what they have experienced, and for others to support them and let them know their feelings are normal.

I hope this opens up discussion, and everyone inputs their opinions...good or bad...pro or con...so we can atleast get the message across that its important to talk about these things and not keep them bottled up inside. Burnout is a major thing, and not enough people talk about things, thinking that its a sign of weakness....from personal experience, ITS NOT.

Stay Safe, both physically and mentaly.

Moose

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There are many factors that lead to Stress. Home (personal) life is one of them and the main one. Couple that with the factors of this job and FF's (even police and emt's) have more stress then most people. It is vital to talk about whatever may be bothering you with someone. CISD is a great way to talk about a mass casualty incident or crtical incident. Having Employee Assistance programs (EAP's) for people to reach out to and talk about personal problems is another good thing. If a FF responding to a call is not thinking clearly because of stress in his or her life, there is a high possibility he or she will not be focusing on safety leading to another issue, injuries on the fireground. Stress can lead to tunnel vision. These programs should not be laughed at but used. We are all human not robots, and everyone from time to time needs to talk to get whatever may be bothering them off their chest and mind.

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IMO - It is always better to talk about things than to bottle them up. Talking to fellow first responders who understand where it is that you are coming from and also seeing other responders talking about the issues that they feel helps. My only concern would be that whoever ends up moderating the forum really needs to have training in Critical Incident Stress Management. The problem comes in that people mean well but sometimes more damage can occur than help if someone is not properly trained in helping these people.

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The westchester co firefighters stress deb team is available 24/7. they are there for "ALL" fire/ems related incidents and if i get the chance I will give more info as far as contact #s.

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I would be worried about people going tellng others what was said in that forum, CISD is suppose to be private, also a big concern can be reporters, how many repoters use this site that we dont know of.

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I'm gonna go with calhobs on this one. You don't really want to air out stuff like that on this site. I do believe we need CISD teams. For anyone who needs one, the phone numbers are out there. Or if you want to use this site, find someone on here who is a CISD counselor, and PM them.

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The Westchester co firefighters stress deb team is available 24/7. they are there for "ALL" fire/ems related incidents and if i get the chance I will give more info as far as contact #s.

We have used them a few times, and we simply call 60 Control and they make the arrangements for the team to meet us at the time and location we request.

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I would be worried about people going tellng others what was said in that forum, CISD is suppose to be private, also a big concern can be reporters, how many repoters use this site that we dont know of.

Oh...Im sorry, I had no idea. I thought that the membership was monitored but you do have a good point. Well, I guess we could always say to everyone who needs it to just PM us or e-mail us. My e-mail address is open to everyone and I have had several experiences with CISD and bad calls both as fire and EMS. My "E" door is always open!!! :D

And also...atleast we emphasised the point of USING CISD here today and hopefully for a long time to come, hopefully everyone is paying attention.

Thanks for pointing that out to me...Im still learning about all of this computer stuff. :P

Stay safe

Moose

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I would much rather talk to my partner or a professional team than post stuff here. It's just not appropriate to do on an internet forum.

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I would much rather talk to my partner or a professional team than post stuff here. It's just not appropriate to do on an internet forum.

Your right...I guess it was a silly idea....I just wanted to stress the importance of the CISD concept and encourage its use by all. Especially the newer members of the fire service.

Hope I atleast brought the message to some of you.

Stay safe

Moose

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No it wasn't a silly idea. But like I said earlier, if you don't have a team available to you, it may not hurt to see if there is one on here and PM them.

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I previously served on CT's CISD team. I think there is certainly value to reaching out to peers, especially those outside of your department, but I also share the concern that a publicly viewable internet forum is probably not the best way to do this. I have a couple of friends who have called me personally to talk about bad calls, they do this mostly because I am thier their friend, but also because they know I don't know anyone else from their agencies and that I am trained to the basic CISD level.

I'm not sure if there is a way to coordinate an internet based CISD effort, but just the same I wouldn't turn away any such E-Mail or PM. Anything we can do to keep each other in good condition to do the job, is a good thing to do. That is really the main point of calling the various emergency services Brotherhoods.

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I previously served on CT's CISD team. I think there is certainly value to reaching out to peers, especially those outside of your department, but I also share the concern that a publicly viewable internet forum is probably not the best way to do this. I have a couple of friends who have called me personally to talk about bad calls, they do this mostly because I am thier their friend, but also because they know I don't know anyone else from their agencies and that I am trained to the basic CISD level.

I'm not sure if there is a way to coordinate an internet based CISD effort, but just the same I wouldn't turn away any such E-Mail or PM. Anything we can do to keep each other in good condition to do the job, is a good thing to do. That is really the main point of calling the various emergency services Brotherhoods.

I definately agree, I am an old school firefighter who believes strongly in brotherhood, or family in the firehouse. Even in the EMS and Police fields, it SHOULD be that way, were all in this together regardless of the name on the back of the coat and we all do the same job...so why not support each other and talk to each other. Especially like you had mentioned about being from an outside agency and a neutral listener.

BFD182....how and where do you get the CISD training? Im going to call the local team but if you have any additional info about the training I would appreciate it brother. Thanks for your input.

Stay safe

Moose

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Just to echo what JBE threw out there. I don't think it was a silly suggestion. In a perfect world we could all share this stuff as responders. Sadly, as we all know this isn't a perfect world. When i'm working i live by "what happens in the ambulance stays in the ambulance." If PD/FD swing by the station at a later time, I'm all about talking.

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I am confused...but without specifics by posting on this site it sometimes can be a stress relief or so it seems to be for some of the users. I guess the whole board is a CISD in a way...I see people express their feelings day in and day out here. In incidents of a large nature where human tragedy is experienced than a satisfactorily trained intervention person is probably much better! As for the press...they are gonna make up the meat anyway.

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One of the teams that services the area is the Hudson Valley Critical Incident Stress Management Team. This team is made up of fire, ems, police, stat flight, and other emergency service members and is available 24/7. The team can be reached by contacting either Westchester, Putnam or Dutchess county fire controls and they will contact the team. Some of the services that are offered include on scene support, one on one peer support, demobilizations, defusings, debriefing, education, and family support services. The team is made up of peers to assist others who can relate to the issues that may be affecting someone or a dept. Privacy is part of the way the team operates. We owe it to our members to provide them with the support they need to deal with tough calls so that we don't make more victims from an incident.

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As far as training I have never heard of any real formal training, I just think its brothers and sisters helping fellow brothers and sisters. I could be very wrong on this. Does anyone know for sure. Also maybe if these people who are involved in CISD here can let Seth know and maybe some one who just needs to talk to someone can contact Seth and he can contact the members of this board who are members of CISD and put the two in touch. Sometimes we all need to talk and sometimes just tlaking to our partner does not help, some times we just need a stranger to air out to. That is if Seth is willing we all know how busy he is with this site.

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Yes, there is real, formal training.

http://www.icisf.org

As an aside, Dutchess has their own excellent critical incident response team.

Bob

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I lost track of this thread for a while but I was going to put up the same link to the foundation. I took my basic class back in 1994 or 1995 in Maryland. I know the classes have changed a bit and there is more than just the Basic & Advanced titles there were. In my short time with the team, I was only called out once and that was for a call my department responded to so I had to decline. I eventually let my membership lapse as most of the team's call volume was far from my area.

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Your right...I guess it was a silly idea....I just wanted to stress the importance of the CISD concept and encourage its use by all. Especially the newer members of the fire service.

Hope I atleast brought the message to some of you.

Stay safe

Moose

I agree it is not a good idea to post on here but your idea in general is not a bad one at all in fact we shoud devote more time looking out for eachother. What about a list server through EMTBRAVO? Is that possible??

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