Having worked in the EAP industry for almost 25 years, I’m occasionally asked what I’ve been the most proud of and what has been the most challenging during my time working with employees, managers/HR, family members, affiliates, vendors, and colleagues. My answer is always the same. Working on any large-scale disaster where there are mass casualties, whether natural or man-made, has always been both highly rewarding in terms of helping to support those in need, but also extremely challenging due to a high degree of stress, anxiety, and emotion.
However, because of Empathia’s experienced clinicians, state-of-the-art technology, and top-notch trauma counselors, we are able to mitigate organizational risk by ensuring that people get timely and accurate information, as well as the human support they need during and after a crisis. This is absolutely critical, no matter the type or level of disaster, and I’m so proud that our reputation is such that we are known as the premier service for assisting companies in preparing for, responding to, and recovering from the human impact of crises.
What are some lessons that we have learned over the last several years providing this program?
#1. Mass casualty means mass media coverage.
#2. A large number of telephone inquiries will occur in the hours and days immediately following a mass casualty crisis, easily reaching hundreds of calls per hour.
#3. In the eyes of the media, public, and elected officials, providing care and assistance to victims and their families is equally important as determining the cause of the disaster.
#4. The public expects the organization to demonstrate support and compassion to survivors, survivor families, and victim families following a crisis, even if the crisis was beyond the organization’s control.
#5. Following a disaster, people primarily want information.
#6. An organization that has experienced a disaster can be perceived as responsible and caring, if it establishes a means of quickly and effectively answering telephone inquiries.
#7. The use of a crisis phone service can provide a tool for responding to public inquiries, however, not all crisis call services are created equal.
To learn more about the importance of a phase-sensitive approach during and following a crisis event, please join us on our upcoming webinar.
Mass Crisis Recovery: The value of a targeted, phase-sensitive approach
March 13th, 2018
1:00 pm-2:00 pm CST
Presenters: Michelle Colosimo (Black Swan Solutions) and Bob VandePol (Pax Crisis Response)
Click Here for Free Registration
What are your thoughts? Do you have any personal stories you are willing to share? Have you had experience dealing with a crisis situation? Please feel free to ask questions or share your feedback below.
Jeremy joined Empathia (then NEAS) in 2007. As an Account Manager, he manages a variety of EAP accounts and also oversees our social media sites. His previous roles here were as Manager, Client Care Services, as well as Sales Consultant. Prior to joining Empathia, he spent 14 years in the EAP industry in a variety of managerial and operational roles. Jeremy holds a Masters in Management; he is a certified wellness coach and a Certified Employee Assistance Professional (CEAP). Jeremy has also assisted in numerous disaster response mass casualty events as a Phone Counselor, Call Center Manager, and Manifest Coordinator. He enjoys reading, photography, music, and spending time with his wife and daughters.