, Volume 20, Issue 8, pp 772-776

Terrorism’s psychologic effects and their implications for primary care policy, research, and education

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Abstract

This paper examines primary care physicians’ (PCP) roles in helping the nation prepare for, respond to, and recover from the psychologic consequences of chemical, biologic, radiologic, or nuclear (CBRN) terrorism. First, we discuss the psychologic consequences of a CBRN attack and PCPs’ roles in responding to these consequences. Second, we analyze these roles in light of the known barriers to delivering high-quality, primary care-based, mental health care. Third, we offer recommendations for mitigating these barriers and preparing PCPs to respond to the psychosocial consequences of a CBRN weapon. Importantly, our recommendations provide dual-use benefits to PCPs faced with the daily concerns of primary care mental health, including improved linkages and electronic connectivity with mental health, information technology, and decision support for providers, and needed education and research.

The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare, for this article or this research.