One of the most important topics mentioned by people from places affected by the February 27th, 2010 earthquake to the Presidential Delegation for the Reconstruction, was the urgent need of mental health care. Given the enormous individual and social burden of mental health sequelae after disasters, its treatment becomes a critical issue. In this article, we propose several actions to be implemented in Chile in the context of the process of recovery and reconstruction, including optimization of social communication and media response to disasters; designing and deployment of a national strategy for volunteer service; training of primary care staff in screening and initial management of post-traumatic stress reactions; and training, continuous education and clinical supervision of a critical number of therapists in evidence-based therapies for conditions specifically related to stress.
RODRIGO A. FIGUEROA 1,2; PAULA F. CORTÉS 2,a
1 Departamento de Psiquiatría, Escuela de Medicina, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. Santiago, Chile.
2 Centro Nacional de Investigación para la Gestión Integrada de Desastres Naturales (CIGIDEN), Comisión Nacional de Investigación Científica y Tecnológica (CONICYT), Fondo de Financiamiento de Centros de Investigación en Áreas Prioritarias (FONDAP No 15110017/2011).