Date of Conferral
Exposure to traumatic events is rare for the general public but common for first responders. However, there is little proactive emotional health care occurring inside the first responder community. No preventive treatment for depression, anxiety, stress, and PTSD exists. The purpose of this study was to determine the efficacy of a psychological readiness training intervention on 361 police officers and firefighters in a medium-size Midwestern city. A combined positive psychological capital and cognitive behavior therapy approach was used to frame the study. This study used a pretest, posttest quasi-experimental design. The participants were a convenience sample of 119 volunteers from a population of 361 first responders. The participants were first administered pretests using the DASS-21 and the Civilian PTSD Self-Report Scale which measured depression, anxiety, stress, and posttraumatic stress. They were then exposed to the psychological readiness training (PRT) intervention, after which the same posttests measuring depression, anxiety, stress, and posttraumatic stress were again administered. T-test results indicated a significant decrease in all 4 symptom categories post training intervention. Implications include providing first responders with the tools needed to process traumatic events to maintain mental health throughout their careers.