First Responder Wellness Assessment
The First Responder Wellness Assessment is a self-report measure designed to assess first responder wellness behavior. It follows an integrative and preventative medicine philosophy which emphasizes holistic practices as key to overall wellness and a focus on addressing issues proactively rather than after a medical or psychological condition has developed.
While it is impossible to prevent all medical and/or psychological conditions, the behavioral choices and practices first responders engage in can play an active part in reducing the likelihood of many problems developing.
This instrument is designed to be used by mental health professionals, chaplains, or other professionals working actively with a first responder on wellness issues. It serves as an educational tool to drive productive conversation around wellness issues.
Key Assessment Areas
This instrument covers what are considered to be key areas of wellness to include mind, body, and spirit. Each section is broken into various subsections so as to provide more granular data to explore within each section. There is also a behavioral adherence section which focuses on specific practices that increase the likelihood of compliance with wellness behaviors.
Sections and subsections include:
- Metabolic Health
- Nutritional Health
- Physical Activity
- Sleep Hygiene and Health
- Coping Skills
- Emotional Agility/Resilience
- Care of the Soul
- Perceived Benefit
- Goal Setting
- Barrier Management
The instrument also provides a comparison of individual first responder behaviors to others in the same profession, as well as in comparison with all first responder professions.
Behavior Health Risk Indicators
A final section addresses behavioral health risk indicators, which identify specific first responder feelings, thoughts, and behaviors that may serve as warning signs for potential problem areas. Providers can review these problem areas with the first responder and address a plan for changes.
Specific behavioral health risk indicators include:
- Family Stressors
- Substance Abuse
- Toxic Cynicism
- Traumatic Stress
- General Anxiety
Questions and Responses
As a means of providing even more specific detail, individual questions and the respondents responses within each section and subsection are listed. This allows the provider to explore individual responses with the first responder in better understanding wellness behaviors.
Wellness Checks for Law Enforcement
An increasingly common practice across the country related to law enforcement involves wellness checks. While there are differing opinions on how these should be addressed, the First Responder Wellness Assessment offers providers a wonderful opportunity to engage officers in a comprehensive discussion of wellness. Rather than being “diagnostic” in nature, the assessment provides strengths and weaknesses in wellness areas and provides a foundation to discuss wellness activities. The clinician can utilize this instrument to address potential weakness areas while reinforcing areas of strength. It allows for the creating of a tangible plan for improvement while at the same time recognizing potential pitfall areas to be addressed.
Mental health professionals providing therapy intervention to first responders may use this instrument as part of an initial intake assessment in order to receive key information on wellness behaviors. This provides important data from which to help coordinate a treatment plan.
Psychological First Aid
Clinicians are often involved in providing psychological first aid to first responders following a critical incident. This instrument may be a useful part of that session as a means of discussing important wellness behaviors that can help the first responder engage in productive behaviors to enhance recovery.
Chaplains may also find this instrument useful in their work with first responders. It may serve to enhance the chaplaincy work in providing additional information related to self-care and identify warning signs that need to be addressed.
Providers within department wellness programs may find this useful in providing a foundational measurement of their participants from which to further educate and monitor progress.
Ordering and Administration
Providers can order one or multiple assessments for administration. The assessment can then be assigned to the first responder via email link. The results are sent directly to the provider for review with the first responder. The provider can then email a pdf of the assessment to the responder so they may have a copy as well.
Assessment pricing is $10.00 per administration. Providers can purchase as many or as few as desired.
Administrations Coming Soon