WHAT WE OFFER: Through a multi-component stress management plan, we help mitigate the impact of traumatic stress through Acute Incident Assistance and Post Incident Support

Acute Incident Assistance: Critical incident stress management begins at the scene through onsite support and demobilization. We provide support to individuals, victims, and survivors who are showing obvious signs of stress as well as providing advice and counsel for agency staff and leadership.

Post-Incident Support: The following services are available to for citizens and emergency responders to help cope with the stresses of traumatic events and major disasters. The type of intervention used depends on the situation, the number of people involved, and their proximity to the event.

  • Peer-to-Peer Support: Team members provide trained supportive listening and offer assistance in developing and maintaining coping mechanisms. These meetings are typically one-on-one and completed in a location comfortable to the individual. The goal is to foster natural resiliency through stabilization, symptom reduction, and return to adaptive functioning (or helping to facilitate access to continued care).
  • Defusing: A defusing is done the day of the incident before the person(s) has a chance to sleep. The defusing is designed to assure the person/people involved that their feelings are normal, tells them what symptoms to watch for over the short term and to offer them a lifeline in the form of a telephone number where they can reach someone who they can talk to. Defusings are limited only to individuals directly involved in the incident and are often done informally, sometimes at the scene.
  • Debriefing: A debriefing is normally done within 72 hours of the incident and gives the individual or group the opportunity to talk about their experience, how it has affected them, brainstorm coping mechanisms, identify individuals at risk, and inform the individual or group about services available to them in their community. Debriefings are limited only to individuals directly involved in the incident and include a 7-phase, structured group discussion with an assigned CISM team.
  • Continued Care Referral: If critical incident stress levels require professional assistance, the CISM Team provides additional resources and referrals for people interested in professional help.

WHO WE ARE: Beginning in January 2019, the Tennessee Department of Health, in collaboration with the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services,established the Tennessee Disaster Mental Health Strike Team through the Tennessee Federation of Fire Chaplains (TFFC). The Strike Team is a cadre of trained Chaplains, Mental Health, and Emergency Service Peer Professionals,  who serve specific regions with two primary purposes.

  • To provide Mental Health First Aid, Crisis Intervention, and initial mental health triage for citizens and emergency responders following traumatice events and major disasters. 
  • To provide a timely initial referral to Licensed Mental Health Care Professionals — including immediate emergency referrals when appropriate. 

Using this Strike Team model, our group is highly trained in mental health screening, mental health first aid, crisis intervention, and most importantly, effective referral to professional mental health services.  ​​

Disaster Mental Health Strike Team

TO REQUEST HELP: The STRIKE Team is activated by a call to 1.8000.792.1033. We can be dispatched 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. When calling please provide the following information:

  • When and where did the incident occur?
  • A brief description of the incident.
  • How many people and groups were involved?
  • What symptoms of stress are being experienced?
  • Have the personnel involved requested help?
  • Name and phone number of a contact person for further information.

A STRIKE Team Coordinator will return your call to further assess your current situation. All STRIKE Team interventions are coordinated by the Team Coordinator and Clinical Coordinator to guarantee the quality of the intervention and to ensure the best servies are offered.