Attention A T users. To access the menus on this page please perform the following steps. 1. Please switch auto forms mode to off. 2. Hit enter to expand a main menu option (Health, Benefits, etc). 3. To enter and activate the submenu links, hit the down arrow. You will now be able to tab or arrow up or down through the submenu options to access/activate the submenu links.

PTSD: National Center for PTSD

Quick Links

Veterans Crisis Line Badge
My healthevet badge

Disasters and Terrorism


Resources for Providers: Responding to Sudden Trauma

Following disasters or terrorism, such as the Fort Hood shooting or PA school attack, initial intervention involves reducing primary distress and offering practical assistance. The resources below will help first responders and mental health providers learn skills in psychological first aid and appropriate response to such events.

For professionals, please see our Resources for Survivors and the Public page.

Psychological First Aid

Psychological First Aid
  • The Psychological First Aid: Field Operations Guide
    PFA is an evidence-informed modular approach for assisting people in the immediate aftermath of disaster to reduce initial distress and to foster short and long-term adaptive functioning. The guide, created jointly with the National Child Traumatic Stress Network, is available in multiple languages. Features:
    • Psychological First Aid Online training for providers
    • PFA Online Videos on YouTube
    • Handouts for survivors
  • PFA Mobile App
    Following disasters or emergencies, the PFA Mobile app can assist responders who provide Psychological First Aid (PFA) to adults, families, and children.
    Free PFA Mobile download from:
    iTunes (iOS)* | Google Play (Android)*
  • Psychological First Aid for Schools (PFA-S)*
    For school staff, this manual is an evidence-informed approach for assisting children, teens, adults, and families in the aftermath of a school crisis, disaster, or terrorism event. The guide includes handouts and worksheets for adults and children.

Early Intervention

Early interventions need to focus on safety, reducing initial distress, gathering information, and offering practical assistance. Find out more about early intervention in this section of our website. Highlights:

Treatment Overview

PTSD and other mental health problems develop in some individuals who experience disaster. Find out more about effective treatments that work in this section of our website. Highlights:

Handouts for Providers

Information and Resources for Community Response

Date this content was last updated is at the bottom of the page.

Share this page

Where to Get Help for PTSD

Search Pilots

Search PILOTS*, the largest citation database on PTSD.
What is PILOTS?

The National Center for PTSD does not provide direct clinical care, individual referrals or benefits information.

*Link will take you outside the VA website. VA is not responsible for the content of the linked site.