Community Collaboration as a Disaster Mental Health Competency: A Systematic Literature Review
Disasters impact the mental health of entire communities through destruction and physical displacement. There is growing recognition of the need for disaster mental health competencies. Professional organizations such as the AAFP and the ASPH recommend engaging with communities in equal partnership for their recovery. This systematic study was undertaken for the purpose of reviewing published disaster medicine competencies to determine if core competencies included community cooperation and collaboration. A search of Internet databases was conducted using major keywords “disaster” and “competencies”. Articles eligible contained laundry lists of basic core competency curriculum beyond emergency response. Data were qualitatively analyzed to identify types of competencies, and the degree of community cooperation. A total of 12 studies were reviewed. Only one study listed competencies specifying community cooperation, although others refer indirectly to it. Findings suggest competency-based education programs could do more to educate future disaster health professionals about the importance of community collaboration.
KeywordsCommunity participation Competency-based education Disaster medicine Public health
The author would like to acknowledge the support of Dr. Asada Takashi, Dept. of Psychiatry, U of Tsukuba.
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