If you are a behavioral health / mental health / addictions recovery professional who can travel to help with Hurricane Harvey survivors in Texas or Louisiana, you may want to consider taking the following steps:
- Contact the Texas or Louisiana Licensing Board related to your discipline to inquire about an expedited licensing registration process:
- Texas Medical Board
- Texas Psychology Board
- Phone: (512) 305-7700
- Website: http://www.tsbep.texas.gov/index.php
- Texas Counseling Board
- Texas Marriage and Family Therapy Board
- Texas Social Work Board
- Texas Nursing Board
- Louisiana Medical Board
- Louisiana Psychology Board
- Louisiana Counseling Board
- Louisiana Marriage and Family Therapy Board
- Louisiana Social Work Board
- Louisiana Nursing Board
- Louisiana Behavior Analyst Board
- Coordinate your efforts through the American Red Cross. They are actively seeking volunteers to help for a minimum of 9 days. Emily Aloto, Recovery Manager for the American Red Cross Buckeye Region reportedly has requested help from licensed EMTs, paramedics, LPNs, RNs, nurse practitioners, doctors, etc. and mental health professionals. See more information about her Red Cross appeal for Hurricane Harvey mental health volunteers.
See the Red Cross Hurricane Harvey registration website here: http://www.redcross.org/take-a-class/lp/hurricane-harvey-health-professionals
- While the Red Cross will help educate you about their processes, as a licensed professional, you may also benefit from reading some of the evidence-base related to known treatment interventions:
- AUGUSTERFER, E. F., MOLLICA, R. F., & LAVELLE, J. (2017). Telemental Health in Post disaster Settings. Telemental Health in Resource-Limited Global Settings, 203.
- Paton, D., & Johnston, D. (2017). Disaster resilience: an integrated approach. Charles C Thomas Publisher.
- Rolston, D. M., & Meltzer, J. S. (2015). Telemedicine in the Intensive Care Unit. Critical care clinics, 31(2), 239-255.
- WHITTAKER, S. Use Catholic Tradition to Guide Telehealth January-February 2015.
- Goodman, R., & West-Olatunji, C. (2008). Transgenerational trauma and resilience: Improving mental health counseling for survivors of Hurricane Katrina. Journal of Mental Health Counseling, 30(2), 121-136.
Please Note: While telehealth is a long term goal for working in disaster areas, current regulations do not allow telepractice into Texas or Louisiana. If you would like to see this changed, send a note to your licensing board and share your views.