Survival Skills for the First Responder

Requesting This Course:

Course Description:
Are you a police officer, firefighter, paramedic or emergency dispatcher? Do you work in a high risk occupation for critical incidents e.g. corrections, nursing or child care social work? If you answered yes to either of the previous questions then you run the risk of burning out of your career or worse yet developing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

In North America seventy percent of the population will be exposed to a critical incident at some point in their life e.g. bad accident, child abuse, sexual assault, family suicide etc. Of this seventy percent, twenty percent will go to develop PTSD. As a first responder or someone who works in a high risk occupation for critical incident stress it is guaranteed that you will not only be exposed to a critical incident but that you will be repeatedly exposed to critical incidents throughout the course of your career.

How then do you survive your career as a first responder? Is it possible to prevent PTSD? Unfortunately PTSD cannot be prevented if the incident is bad enough but there are steps that you can take to emotionally immunize yourself so that when you do face a critical incident(s) you know what to do. Education on just exactly what is post-traumatic stress disorder is and how to maintain your work life balance maybe the keys to remaining and thriving as a first responder.

Survival Skills for the First Responder is a one day program developed by a former first responder who was diagnosed himself with PTSD in 2009. He has taken his experiences with PTSD; diagnosis, education and the healing process and developed a set of practical survival skills that you can use in your work and home life. Hopefully these survival skills will prevent you from travelling the hard road of first responder burnout or worse yet a diagnosis of PTSD.

Program Highlights:

  • What is the psyche of a First Responder?
  • As first responders how do we achieve a work/life/family balance when we live in a world of heightened arousal?
  • What defines a critical incident?
  • Are there affects to the hundreds of non-critical incidents that we will respond to during our career?
  • Can childhood or adolescent critical incidents affect the career of the first responder?
  • What is post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)?
  • What are the signs and symptoms of PTSD?
  • How is PTSD treated?
  • How to achieve a work/life balance as a professional or volunteer first responder
  • Can PTSD be prevented? 12 Survival Skills

Continuing Education Information:

One-Day Course

General Contact Hours: 

7 Contact Hours: 0.7 General CEUs from University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) Dept. of Emergency Health Services Professional and Continuing Education (PACE)

*Based on a formula of 1 Continuing Education Unit for every 10 contact/classroom hours.

Profession Specific Contact Hours:

  • 7 PDHs from EAPs (Expiration Date – May 31, 2023)

*PLEASE NOTE: These hours are only applicable towards courses offered at Live Trainings, Regional Trainings, Online Courses, and the World Congress.  

Approved Instructor Courses:

It is up to the Approved Instructors or sponsoring agency to apply for profession specific Continuing Education Unit’s if they choose.  Learn more on our CEU Information page.

** Please check with your state licensing board prior to registration to see if they will accept the certificate of completion as a means for continuing education.