2017 Great Plains Disaster Behavioral Health Conference


The Great Plains Disaster Behavioral Health Conference is for psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, mental health care providers, public health officials, nurses, clergy, emergency managers, and first responders to learn and recognize how to prepare and respond to the psychological effects of disaster and mass casualties.

Conference Theme: Back to Basics

Click Here for the Conference Brochure.
Click Here to Register.

Date and Location

Date: July 27 & 28, 2017 (Note: July 27 is SOLD OUT)
Location: Embassy Suites Downtown Omaha, 555 South 10th Street, Omaha, NE 68102
To make a reservation, you can call 1-800-EMBASSY (362-2779) or use this link:

Continuing Education

The University of Nebraska Public Policy Center (NUPPC) is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The NUPPC maintains responsibility for this program and its content. This conference has been approved for 6.25 CEs for each day of the conference (or 12.5 CEs for both days).

Conference Objectives

This year’s conference presents the opportunity to take part in two trainings, which are appropriate for both licensed behavioral health professionals and for paraprofessional disaster behavioral health responders.

Conference Objectives
1. Become familiar with skills to serve survivors of disaster and/or emergency events.
2. Differentiate approaches to serve survivors at different phases following a disaster.
3. Gain experience applying appropriate interventions through practice exercises.

Day One – July 27, 2017 Sold Out
Nebraska Psychological First Aid Training (PFA)
The purpose of the Nebraska psychological first aid program is to equip natural helpers to provide psychological support to survivors of critical events (e.g. disasters, conflicts, accidents, etc.). It is segmented into seven modules, each addressing critical skills that can make an immediate and lasting impact on a person’s psychological health following a crisis: 1) Psychological Support; 2) Stress and Coping; 3) Supportive Communication; 4) Promoting Community Self-Help; 5) Populations with Functional Needs; 6) Helping the Helper; and 7) De-escalation.

Day Two – July 28, 2017
Skills for Psychological Recovery (SPR)
This presentation will provide an overview of the NCTSN/NCPTSD Skills for Psychological Recovery (SPR) intervention,  which is a modulized approach to working with disaster survivors in the recovery phase. SPR consists of six modules with handouts and work sheets: 1) Information Gathering; 2) Enhancing Problem-Solving Skills; 3) Promoting Positive Activities; 4) Managing Reactions; 5) Promoting Helpful Thinking; and 6) Rebuilding Healthy Connections. Participants will practice SPR and how to adapt this intervention for diverse populations and settings.
It is highly recommended that participants have been trained in Psychological First Aid (any current model) prior to taking SPR Training.

Conference Faculty and Materials

Melissa Brymer, Ph.D., Psy.D.
Dr. Brymer is the Director of Terrorism and Disaster Programs of the UCLA/Duke University National Center for Child Traumatic Stress and its National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN). In this capacity, Dr. Brymer has been involved with the development of acute interventions, assessment, and educational materials in the area of terrorism, disasters, and school crises. She is one of the primary authors of NCTSN/NCPTSD Psychological First Aid and Skills for Psychological Recovery and has served as a consultant for many Federal, state, and local agencies across the country and internationally after disasters, terrorism, school shootings, and other mass violence tragedies. Dr. Brymer is the lead advisor to the Newtown Public Schools recovery program, and has helped to establish many long-term public disaster mental health programs for children and families. She is also the lead investigator for a National Institute of Justice research grant examining the short- and long-term impact of multiple deadly school shootings and mass violence events.

Conference Sponsors
Bryan LGH DHHS OMMR PPC