About the Program: What You Learn
About the Course
The Mental Health First Aid program is an interactive session which runs 12 hours. It can be conducted as one two-day seminar, two one day events spaced over a short period of time or as four 3-hour sessions. Mental Health First Aid certification must be renewed every three years, and introduces participants to risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems, builds understanding of their impact and overviews common treatments.
- The potential risk factors and warning signs for a range of mental health problems, including: depression, anxiety/trauma, psychosis, eating disorders, substance use disorders, and self-injury
- An understanding of the prevalence of various mental health disorders in the U.S. and the need for reduced stigma in their communities
- A 5-step action plan encompassing the skills, resources and knowledge to assess the situation, to select and implement appropriate interventions, and to help the individual in crisis connect with appropriate professional care
- The evidence-based professional, peer, social, and self-help resources available to help someone with a mental health problem.
Watch our video of a sample role play scenario which shows some of the techniques learned in the Mental Health First Aid course. Specifically, the video depicts an individual experiencing psychosis & a neighbor, an individual certified in Mental Health First Aid, who assists her through her emotional crisis.
Who should become a Mental Health First Aider?
Specific audiences for each training vary, but include key professions such as law enforcement and other first responders, primary care professionals, nursing home staff, and school administration and educators. Other participating entities include faith communities, employers and chambers of commerce, state policymakers, mental health advocacy organizations, shelter volunteers, families and the general public.
Mental Health First Aid in your Community
Mental Health First Aid USA envisions that Mental Health First Aid will become as common as CPR and First Aid training during the next decade. MHFA USA certifies community providers to implement Mental Health First Aid in communities throughout the United Sates. Each Mental Health First Aid site develops individualized plans to reach their communities, but all deliver the core 12-hour program and each participating site undergoes tight credentialing to guarantee fidelity to the original, tested model, while also maintaining the flexibility necessary to reach its unique citizens needs and demographics.