Health and Wellness Sessions
WE1 Stress Management and Behavioral Wellness
Wednesday - 1:00 - 3:00 pm
Brandon Dreiman, FF/Paramedic, Indianapolis Fire Department, IN
This two-hour presentation seeks to provide all levels of fire service personnel with a foundation in basic stress management definitions and principles. Students will be taught how to define and identify stress generally. They will also learn to identify signs of Post Traumatic Stress and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The diagnosis of PTSD and its role in the fire service are also examined. Issues regarding the causes, facts, and myths about substance abuse and its prevalence in the fire service are discussed.
Students are also asked to discuss suicide, its signs, and what to do when confronted with a suicidal colleague. Statistics regarding firefighter suicide are also reviewed. Students will learn the definitions of vicarious trauma and burnout, as well as the signs of symptoms of those conditions. Then we will detail how vicarious trauma and burnout work together to cause compassion fatigue.
A simple test for checking oneself for compassion fatigue is also reviewed. As part of learning self-care tactics, students will learn the three types of resiliency and how to practice and implement them in their day-to-day lives. We will also examine the components of what may be included in an overall Wellness Program. Components to be covered include training and outreach, stress management tactics, Peer Support Teams, Employee Assistance Programs, alcohol/substance abuse programs, in-patient behavioral services and dual diagnosis facilities, evidence-based therapies, and referrals to clinicians who understand firefighters.
Students will then be asked to discuss what barriers exist for firefighters wanting help. We then discuss what students can do immediately to begin gathering resources to be used in stress management for themselves and their departments. This will require them to think particularly about their local resources. We will conclude with a summary and question period.
WE2 S.O.S. Significant Other Survival
Dr. Kathleen Wellbrock, The Counseling Team International, Riverside, CA
Thursday - 8:00 am to 11:00 am
Note: This class is open to attendees and their significant others for class participation. There is no additional cost to attend this session.
In recent years, "wellness" has become a popular term within the Fire Department culture, but what does it mean to "be well". Significant Other Survival (SOS) will guide you down a path of discovery and insight into fire service family challenges. You will learn about relationship and family challenges, how to cope with stress in positive and productive way. You will understand the impact critical incidents have on both the firefighter and the family, and learn about and identify symptoms related to depression, PTSD, and suicide.
WE3 Taking Action Against Cancer in the Fire Service | 2017
Kurt Latipow, Fire Chief (Ret.), Lompac Fire Department, CA
Regional Director - Firefighter Cancer Support Network
Thursday - 10:30 am to 12:00 pm
This program has three areas of discussion. Part 1 will cover a number of studies that focus on firefighter mortality and risk, along with pertinent national and local statistics. Part 2 will cover the exposures faced by firefighters and how these exposures are affecting our members. Part 3 will address what we can and should be doing differently to reduce the incidence of cancer in the fire service.
FCSN has delivered our extensive occupational cancer awareness and prevention training to thousands of firefighters across America. The International Association of Fire Fighters online cancer awareness and prevention course, created in cooperation with FCSN, launched in May 2016 and continually updated to reflect the most recent studies and technology .
FCSN’s unique array of supporters including: the international Association of Fire Fighters, International Association of Fire Chiefs, the National Volunteer Fire Council, NIOSH, Los Angeles Local 1014, IFSTA, National Fallen Firefighters Foundation, Firefighter Close Calls, and Firehouse, Fire Rescue, and Fire Engineering magazines and more.