Stress disorder - 799/16
Dated: 05 Aug 2016
Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')
Thank you for your e mail dated 8 July 2016 in which you made a request for access to certain information which may be held by Northumbria Police.
As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.
1a. what psychological support is in place after a major incident and how is it implemented?
b. If debriefing is offered, is it operational debriefing and / or psychological debriefing (please see the definitions below)? Please specify if you use a specific package, such as Critical Incident Stress Debriefing (CISD), TRiM or another trauma defusing / debriefing model? Please note: "Operational debriefing is a gathering of the relevant people after an operation has happened, when they can give feedback on, for example, the: planning, organisation, execution, and outcome (Home Office 2014) "Psychological debriefing is broadly defined as a set of procedures including counselling and the giving of information aimed at preventing psychological morbidity and aiding recovery after a traumatic event" (Kenardy, 2000).
2a. If a police officer is showing trauma symptoms, how are these assessed?
b.Who would make a diagnosis if these symptoms developed in to PTSD?
3. Do you have guidelines / policies for supporting police officers with PTSD / trauma symptoms? Please answer YES or NO. If YES, please provide links or copies to the relevant documents.
4. How is a diagnosis of PTSD recorded on a police officer’s HR sickness record (e.g. is it recorded under a generic category such as ‘stress’, or as PTSD)?
5a. How many police officers had PTSD recorded on their HR sickness record in the calendar year 2015?
b. If number of police officers is not recorded, how many days lost due to PTSD were recorded in the calendar year 2015?
6a. How many police officers had stress or psychological absence recorded on their HR sickness record in the calendar year 2015?
b. If number of police officers is not recorded, how many days lost due to stress or psychological absence were recorded in the calendar year 2015?
7. Are police officers presenting with trauma symptoms / PTSD offered trauma therapy internally? If yes, please answer the following questions: a) Who is this delivered by?
b) Are police officers offered trauma-focused cognitive behavioural therapy (TF-CBT) and / or eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR)? If they are not offered these therapies, please specify the therapies they are offered to treat trauma symptoms / PTSD?
c) What is the maximum number of sessions provided by the Police Force?
8. Are police officers presenting with trauma symptoms / PTSD referred to external agencies (e.g. Employment Assistance Programmes, NHS services etc) for psychological treatment? If yes, please answer the following questions:
a) Please provide the name of the external agencies they are referred to?
b) What is the maximum number of sessions funded by the Police Force?
c) Are police officers offered external trauma-focused cognitive behavioural therapy (TF-CBT) and / or eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR)? If they are not offered these therapies, please specify the therapies they are offered to treat trauma symptoms / PTSD? d) How many police officers were referred externally for trauma therapy in the calendar year 2015?
We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention.
Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the HR Department of Northumbria Police. I can confirm that the information you have requested is held in part by Northumbria Police.
I am able to disclose the located information to you as follows.
1a. Northumbria Police provides post incident support to include; Trauma Risk Management (TRiM) briefings; TRiM 1 to 1 assessment, Occupational Health support for individuals where adverse reactions are identified; Post Trauma leaflets which offer information, advice and guidance.
1b. A TRiM psychological debriefing and a TRiM operational debriefing are both offered.
2a. A TRiM 1 to 1 assessment. Occupational Health may also be requested to assess an officer.
2b. If symptoms developed in to PTSD the diagnosis would be made externally to the organisation via the NHS.
3. Yes, please find attached the ‘Post Incident Support Procedure’.
4. The sickness absence recording system includes the absence category ‘Post Traumatic Stress’. This is an agreed sickness absence category specified by the National Attendance Management Forum.
5a. 10 officers (included in Table below)
6a. 240 officers, please see the table below.
Absence Reason No of Officers
I1 Anxiety 39
I3 Depression 44
I4 Drug or alcohol problems
(inc. painkillers or tranquilisers) 1
I5 Other mental health
(inc. bipolar schizophrenia hypomania) 2
I6 Post Traumatic Stress 10
I7 Stress 144
7, 7a. Yes, initial counselling support is available from Occupational Health Counsellors.
7b. Neither are available ‘in-house’ from Occupational Health. Officers can be offered trauma focussed counselling with CBT focus.
7c. The number of sessions is determined by the presenting symptoms and is usually around 6 sessions. The number of sessions can be extended if required.
8. They are referred to the NHS
8b. Typically, no external referrals are made, officers are advised to consult with their own GP to discuss access to NHS treatment or other services.
8c. This is not available ‘in house’ via Occupational Health. Officers are referred to the NHS via their GP.
8d. This information is not recorded.
Due to the different methods of recording information across 43 forces, a specific response from one constabulary should not be seen as an indication of what information could be supplied (within cost) by another. Systems used for recording these figures are not generic, nor are the procedures used locally in capturing the data. For this reason responses between forces may differ, and should not be used for comparative purposes.
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