Ohio Assist provides first responders with post-traumatic help - Hometownstations.com-WLIO- Lima, OH News Weather Sports

Ohio Assist provides first responders with post-traumatic help

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The Ohio Assist program was created in March of 2016 in an effort to help public agencies all through the state. The Ohio Assist program was created in March of 2016 in an effort to help public agencies all through the state.
Ohio Assist teaches participants how to address the warning signs and what resources are out there to help a person cope. Ohio Assist teaches participants how to address the warning signs and what resources are out there to help a person cope.

Car accidents. House fires. First responders deal with many scary scenes, more than the common citizen. A recent program is helping them cope with that trauma.

The Ohio Assist program was created in March of 2016 in an effort to help public agencies all through the state. About 12 different organizations were represented for the presentation of the program at Bath Township Firehouse. The program involves pre-critical incident training and post critical aftercare.

"We want to give them an idea of the things they are possibly going to face, the reactions they’re going to have to those things," said Lt. Steve Click of the Ohio State Highway Patrol and who teaches the program. "Then when those things do happen we want to make sure we are providing them the resources in order to keep them healthy and safe."

First responders primarily are taught about warning signs and how those could appear in many different ways. Those signs can be physical, emotional, cognitive or behavioral. It’s taught everyone responds to things differently. Ohio Assist teaches participants how to address the warning signs and what resources are out there to help a person cope.

"It’s our responsibility to make sure that our firefighters, paramedics are receiving the support that they need when they are exposed to tragic situations," Bath Township Fire Chief, Joe Kitchen said. "I think sometimes we just assume that they’re good to go, that it’s part of their job but, they’re human beings and this training today is talking a lot about what we can do to help support them."

"These firefighters and these police officers and sheriff’s deputies, state troopers they know that someone cares about what they’re going through," Ohio State Highway Patrol Lt. Tim Grigsby said. "They can talk about it. Help them to deal with because we’re the ones out there helping people, sometimes we need the help too."

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