Critical Incident Stress Management

Critical Incident Stress Management, or CISM, is a structured and professionally recognized process for helping people involved in a critical incident to share their experiences, vent emotions, learn about stress reactions and symptoms and given referral for further help if needed.

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Critical Incident Stress Management, or CISM, is a structured and professionally recognized process for helping people involved in a critical incident to share their experiences, vent emotions, learn about stress reactions and symptoms and given referral for further help if needed. It is not psychotherapy. It is a confidential, voluntary and educative process, sometimes called ‘psychological first aid’.
Hope and Meaning Counseling staff can do a variety of CISM-related services:

Debriefing involves a group meeting or discussion about a particularly distressing critical incident. It is designed to reduce the impact of a critical incident and to assist people recovering from the stress associated with the event. Debriefing is facilitated by a specially trained team which includes professional and peer support personnel. Ideally it is conducted between 24 and 72 hours after the incident, but may be held later as needed.

Defusing is an intervention that is a shorter, less formal version of a debriefing . It generally lasts from 30 to 60 minutes, but may go longer and is best conducted within shortly after a critical incident. Like a debriefing, it is a confidential and voluntary opportunity to learn about stress, share reactions to an incident and vent emotions. The main purpose is to stabilize people affected by the incident so that they can return to their normal routines without unusual stress. When appropriate, a formal debriefing also be required.

Grief and Loss Sessions are structured group or individual sessions following a traumatic event and assists people in understanding their own grief reactions as well as creating a healthy atmosphere of openness and dialogue around the circumstances of the death.

Crisis Management Briefings are large group interventions used before, during and after crisis to present facts, facilitate a brief, controlled discussion, Q & A and info on stress survival skills and/or other available support services.
Critical Incident Adjustment Support provides multi-faceted humanitarian assistance to individual, families or groups for coping with the aftermath of an incident and overcoming the ongoing impact of a traumatic event.

Pre-Crisis Education provides a foundation for CISM services. It includes incident awareness, crisis response strategies and develops stress management coping skills that can prevent major problems should an incident occur. It can take the form of an employee handbook, e-book and/or workshops and training seminars.