In the future is it possible that CPR and mental health first aid will be taught together? It is a possibility. This great article in the Washington Post suggested that one is more likely to encounter someone who is experiencing a behavioral health condition or crisis" than someone facing a physical emergency, said Laira Roth, the council's project manager for the first aid course. Did you know that one in four Americans will suffer from a mental illness or addiction?
The best approach boils down to a five-letter acronym, ALGEE.
A: Assess for risk of suicide or harm.
L: Listen non-judgmentally.
G: Give reassurance and information.
E: Encourage appropriate professional help.
E: Encourage self-help and other support strategies.
Tracy A. Jones is an American Heart Association Master Program Trainer, Instructor, & AHA Faculty Member located in San Antonio, Texas.