CENTER FOR APPLIED PSYCHOLOGY PROVIDES SUPPORT TO VICTIMS OF FIRES

FROM THE BEGINNING OF THE DISASTERS, THE UNIVERSITY, THROUGH CEPA, HAS BEEN PRESENT IN THE MITIGATION OF THE MENTAL HARM TO THE PEOPLE AFFECTED BY THE FIRES.



March 03, 2017

In many different ways, our University’s Center for Applied Psychology (ECA) has been supporting the victims of the fires that affected the Maule Region. The contribution ranged from psychological care to those affected to the participation in the emergency and disaster psychology committee.

The director of CEPA, Soledad Schott, stated that, in response to the call of the Maule Health Service, the Center - which belongs to the Department of Psychology-, participated in coordination meetings for the first actions on the ground carried out in the Region. "The goal was not to repeat the mistakes of 27F (2010’s Earthquake). In that regard, there was a call for volunteers to make a register of qualified professionals and train these professionals in psychological first aid, providing guidelines on what should or should not be done," said Soledad Schott.

In addition, specialists from the CEPA reinforced the team of mental health of Constitución and Chanco, with special emphasis on the care of children and prior coordination with the service. In this sense, Schott emphasized that the support and participation of the academics from the Department, Rosario Spencer, Andrés Fresno, Daniel Núñez and Marcelo Leiva have been central in this work, because they have significant experience in trauma, children and disasters.

According to the director of CEPA, one of the results of the work carried out was the agreement to implement the intersectoral action plan on mental health and psychosocial support in the Maule Region, which was developed in conjunction with the Onemi, Injuv, Center for the Attention to Victims of Violent Crimes (CAVD), Junji, Senadis, the Seremi of Health and the CEPA, in addition to the support teams of Mental Health Response (Arsam) of the health services form Coquimbo, Osorno and the Maule Region. "In this way, it was possible to strengthen the functioning of the emergency and disaster situations psychology Committee," she said.

Soledad Schott concluded that it was possible to develop a joint and organized work, in which each one of the members offered his or her know-how. "The CEPA is committed to continue supporting the fire brigade members and firefighters, and to develop psychoeducation capsules for the community," she said.

In the same sense, she commented that from the academic sector, Marcelo Leiva shared the results of his research on the events of the 27F, and Doris Mendez shared her experience in psychosocial interventions. The director of the CEPA stated that the coordination of actions continues in order to mitigate the impact of the disaster on the mental health of the Maulean people.



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