A Systematic Literature Search on Psychological First Aid: Lack of Evidence to Develop Guidelines

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Although PFA is considered to be an important approach for disaster-affected populations, there is a complete lack of experimental and observational studies on the effectiveness of PFA in the immediate aftermath of a disaster. Currently it is impossible to make evidence-based guidelines about which practices in psychosocial support are most effective to help disaster and trauma victims.

Providing psychological first aid (PFA) is generally considered to be an important element in preliminary care of disaster victims. The aim of this review is to identify effective PFA practices, by systematically reviewing the evidence in existing guidelines, systematic reviews and individual studies.

Two earlier reviews have been superseded by the review above. These are “Systematic Review of Psychological First Aid” and “The Effectiveness of Psychological First Aid as a Disaster Intervention Tool: Research Analysis of Peer-Reviewed Literature From 1990-2010”

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