Friday, January 25, 2008

Workers Comp for the Effects of Horrible Knowledge

Lincoln, Nebraska. A proposed new law in the State of Nebraska will allow first responders to obtain workers' compensation for posttraumatic stress resulting from their witnessing criminal acts that are so traumatizing as to create "mental effects."

Proactive EAPs in Nebraska should use this window of opportunity to discuss the helpful role they play, or could better play, in mitigating the effects of horrible knowledge by being available to employees who are affected by trauma.

This proposed law will begin a community dialog on how to help first responders. EAPs should move quickly to position themselves as best able to respond to these needs. Why? CISM requires peer debriefers of course, but mental health professionals also participate in CISDs.

Afterwards and beforehand mental health professionals play consultative roles in helping guide and support CISM programs. They know the culture wherein first responders work. And this provides an unmatched ability to help the first responder because the nuances of the organizational context are known and incorporated into the helping process.

The sooner CISM is started, the better its outcome. Emergency services can use EAPs to help employees and reduce the costs of workers comp, employee turnover, and lost time just name a few. The link below explains more: