Large-scale disasters, including humanitarian crises and natural disaster, are a focus of mental health professionals when treating and studying trauma. Groups targeted by the World Health Organization for emergency psychological treatment typically include refugees, internally displaced persons, disaster survivors, and populations exposed to terrorism, war, or genocide. Many individuals exposed to traumatic situations will go on to develop psychological disorders including depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Studies of natural disasters such as mudslides, earthquakes, and hurricanes indicate that over half of those affected suffer from significant mental distress as a result. In recent years, renewed focus has been applied to third-world and resource-poor countries in which most humanitarian disasters occur.

Hurricanes Harvey and Irma disaster response and recovery resources

Those receiving and providing assistance can be affected by the distress of a catastrophic natural disaster. Ideal interventions promote the evidence-based principles of Psychological First Aid, including: safety, calming, self- and community-efficacy, social connectedness, and a sense of hope/optimism. Check out this compilation of related resources.

Give an Hour™ Offers Free Mental Health Services in Response to the Massive Destruction of Hurricane Harvey in Texas

Give an Hour™ a national nonprofit 501(c)(3), founded in September 2005, announces that it is opening its network to provide immediate and long term mental health support for those affected by Hurricane Harvey. Give an Hour will extend these services to those affected by Hurricane Irma should the need arise.

Doctor on Demand, MDLIVE offer free video visits to victims of Hurricane Harvey

One of the many things extreme weather makes difficult is accessing healthcare services, a near impossibility when a deluge of rain has trapped people in homes and shelters. Telemedicine companies are jumping in to fill the void, offering physician consultations remotely to those who may be trapped by flooding and extreme winds.

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