Psychological first aid helps people in distress cope better

A medical mission by the Singapore Red Cross to Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, in 2018.
A medical mission by the Singapore Red Cross to Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, in 2018.PHOTO: SINGAPORE RED CROSS

Skill useful in crisis, as well as day-to-day mental health concerns of ordinary residents

As a nursing student and Red Cross volunteer, 21-year-old Aaron Lim has tended to all kinds of injuries, from bloody wounds to broken limbs. But the type of injury he finds to be most destructive is not one that is physical in nature.

"Physical wounds can heal but psychological wounds can linger for years, even decades," said Mr Lim, one of 2,000 people trained by the Singapore Red Cross (SRC) to give Psychological First Aid (PFA) to those in emotional distress or to victims during and after a crisis.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 03, 2019, with the headline 'Psychological first aid helps people in distress cope better'. Print Edition | Subscribe