First Responder Safety & Wellness

Mission & Vision

In order to enhance the safety and wellness of first responders and their families, the National Police Foundation’s Center for Mass Violence Response Studies has partnered with UCF RESTORES. Established in 2011 on the core mission of restoring lives, families and communities, UCF RESTORES is working to change the way PTSD is understood, diagnosed and treated.

Program Details

The Center for Mass Violence Response Studies works closely with UCF RESTORES in several areas:

  • Dr. Deborah Beidel serves on the CMVRS Advisory Board,
  • UCF RESTORES provides clinicians who serve on CMVRS’ critical incident review teams,
  • UCF RESTORES clinicians participate in National Police Foundation technical assistance projects focused on crisis intervention training (CIT) and law enforcement suicide prevention,
  • UCF RESTORES and CMVRS partner on research and grant proposals, CMVRS refers law enforcement and other public safety personnel in need of specialized services to UCF RESTORES.

 

A unique feature of UCF RESTORES is its dedication to using technology to enhance and disseminate empirically supported treatments. UCF RESTORES is composed of three inter-related functions: Clinical care, Clinical Research, and Education.

Clinical Care

Our clinical care is grounded in science. The center’s first-of-its-kind intensive outpatient program leverages a multidisciplinary treatment approach, incorporating exposure therapy, group treatment and new, emerging technologies to reduce the distressing symptoms that often accompany a traumatic event. This evidence-based treatment approach has seen unprecedented success, with 66% of participants with combat-related PTSD and 76% of first responders no longer meeting the diagnostic criteria for PTSD following treatment. Although typically delivered in our clinic, we are currently using telehealth to provide our treatment services. Our treatment program serves active duty military personnel, veterans, first responders, and survivors of sexual assault.

Clinical Research
Using a “bench to bedside” approach, our clinical research activities are diverse; including studies designed to elucidate phenomenology, developmental course, etiology, treatment development and evaluation, methodology development and evaluation, and the systematic examination of resilience and prevention. The faculty at the center have been the recipients of over $30 million in federal research funding.  Current projects include the examination of our unique intensive outpatient program on three US military installations, the development of a new virtual reality tool to provide enhanced treatment experiences for first responders, and the examination of a new sleep “app” and light therapy to treat the sleep disturbance that often accompanies posttraumatic stress disorder.

Education
The center provides educational experiences for undergraduate and graduate students as well as post-doctoral levels and community clinicians. We also serve as an educational and consultative resource to various state and local governments and maintains liaison with other major anxiety disorders centers nationally and internationally.

COVID-19
During this time of the COVID-19 global pandemic, we are still offering all our treatment services via telehealth, using a HIPAA compliant video platform. We have also launched a Facebook Lives series Mental Wellness Amid the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The presentations are live on Mondays at 10:00am and Thursdays at 2:00pm, continuing through May 18, 2020. Videos of previous episodes appear on our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/UCFRESTORES/ and on our website www.ucfrestores.org.

For more information on UCF RESTORES, visit http://www.ucfrestores.org and follow UCF RESTORES on Facebook.