Post-Disaster Child Mental Health: Feb. 8th Learning Opportunity

2016-2-8 open forum

OPENPediatrics is an online learning community that provides continuing medical education freely and openly, and connects providers in all resource settings in one global community of care. A Global Health World Shared Practice Forum is a quarterly forum where global health practitioners gather to view a pre-recorded video lecture and discuss questions interspersed throughout the presentation. These videos are viewed through OPENPediatrics and structured so that other practitioners around the world are also watching the video and posting their discussion responses to a live discussion board. This provides an opportunity for the sharing of best practices across time zones and geographic borders.
This video will discuss the increasing incidence of disasters, the impact of these disasters on children’s mental health – particularly in underserved and under-resourced communities and the best practices for treating and preventing mental illness in children.

  • Dr. Maru discusses his experience in the devastating Nepal earthquake, the initial mental burden of shock and confusion following a disaster, and the importance of helping aid workers.
  • Dr. Palfrey discusses the disproportionate impact of disasters on low-development level countries and children’s characteristic reactions to the physical and mental shock of disaster.
  • Dr. Belfer presents a list of best practices to ensure the proper treatment and prevention of child mental illness following disasters and outlines important developmental frameworks for establishing normalcy in post-disaster life.
  • Dr. Ahlers describes the “four phases” of disaster relief, and emphasizes the importance of focusing on the mental health of vulnerable populations throughout these four phases.

Following this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Understand the impact of disasters on children’s mental health
  • Identify the factors that contribute to mental illness risk in post-disaster periods
  • Recognize the disproportionate impact of disasters on lower human development levels and vulnerable populations
  • Describe the typical mental health response of children following disaster
  • Describe the best practices in treating and preventing child mental illness
  • Outline recommended post-disaster steps to establish normalcy, community empowerment, and healthy mental environments

How to View The Forum Video: The Global Health World Shared Practice Forum will be displayed through the OPENPediatrics’ Clinician community site and public website. Please Go to and register for a free account. On February 8th, 2016, or any later date, you can log in to the site and click the link from the home page to view this video. This video and its transcript can also be found at‐practice-forums.

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Laurel Richter
10 months ago

Children however are just now learning how to make good decisions and quite few of their behaviors are based on actions that they themselves see. In other words, if you are yelling and throwing things when angry, don’t let someone tell you that your child is mentally ill when they throw tantrums and have angry behavior problems. You simply need to change your own behavior and give them a different pattern to learn from.

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