Health World

Humanitarian Action: Do not overlook the factor Psy

Earthquakes, famines, wars … the humanitarian emergencies affect not only the physical but also psychological health and well-being of those who are its victims. On the occasion of World Day of humanitarian aid on 19 August, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced the publication of a guide to psychological first aid for humanitarian workers on the ground.

According to Dr. Bruce Aylward, Director-General of the Organization in charge of polio emergency and collaboration with countries, “over the past five years, the psychological damage resulting tsunami, earthquakes land, drought and conflict (armed) have proved as devastating as physical damage. WHO and its partners have developed this guide with the goal) ensure that standards and best practices are applied consistently within the framework of humanitarian assistance. ”

Approved by 24 major international organizations, the content of this guide can be taught to aid workers in one day. It is immediately applicable. It will allow them to provide psychosocial support basic but vital to those in acute distress. It will also help aid themselves if they are traumatized in return. “Knowing how to listen, comfort, support, while respecting the culture, dignity, abilities and rights of survivors, anywhere in the world is the main purpose of this guide,” said Dr. Leslie Snider, senior advisor for programs in the War Trauma Foundation of the Netherlands.

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