Public safety personnel (PSP) are repeatedly exposed to potentially psychologically traumatic events in the course of their daily work. The exposures put PSP at risk for mental health impacts and severe psychological difficulties, known as posttraumatic stress injuries (PTSI).

In 2015, the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness was given a mandate to develop an action plan on a specific PTSI, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). A component of that action plan was to strengthen the collective understanding of PTSI through research. CIPSRT and the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR) have formed a consortium on PTSI among PSP. The consortium is designed to support increased development of the evidence base relating to PTSI among PSP. CIPSRT serves as the knowledge exchange hub for the consortium efforts, facilitating engagement between the research community and many diverse PSP stakeholders.

In March 2019, CIHR awarded 22 PTSI Catalyst Grants totaling $2.95 million to researchers across the country as part of the collective effort to improve our understanding of the policies, programs, and treatments designed to support the mental health and wellbeing of PSP, their leadership, and their families. Results from the CIHR PTSI Catalyst Grants will help to advance our collective capacity to support the mental health of PSP. The grants serve as springboards for research and engagement that will increase our understanding of how to identify, treat, and reduce PTSI in PSP.

CIPSRT will be spotlighting each of the Catalyst Grant projects and their Principal Investigators in the coming months. Each brief profile is designed to highlight the work that is being done to help the PSP across Canada.

Serving and Surviving: Roads to resilience in policing
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Development and validation of a mental health screening tool for public safety personnel
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Understanding the prevalence of mental health disorders in provincial correctional officers—A national study
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Mental health support services for public safety personnel in Canada
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Do cognitive behavioural therapy skills classes increase a resiliency-related brain connectivity pattern to posttraumatic stress disorder?
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“E-Ami” Co-designing a mobile health approach to PTSI prevention and peer support with Ontario public safety personnel
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Firefighters accessing care for trauma: A clinical case series testing the efficacy of distance-delivered narrative exposure therapy in reducing PTSD/I symptoms
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The SKIP study: Sudarshan Kriya yoga in posttraumatic stress injury (SKIP), an RCT for public safety personnel
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Evaluation of a training program to protect firefighters’ mental health from the effects of traumatic incidents
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Pan Canadian Public Safety Personnel: Ongoing Knowledge Translation and Strategic Development
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An analysis of the Correctional Service Canada correctional personnel training program
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A smartphone ecological momentary assessment 'app' for collecting real-time data on post-traumatic stress injuries in firefighters.
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Compromised conscience Towards managing moral injuries in public safety personnel
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Unpacking the sociocultural characteristics of operational stress injuries among paramedics: A mixed-methods approach
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Understanding the impact of prison work on the mental health of Correctional Officers employed by Correctional Services Canada: Beginning of a longitudinal study
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Psychological first aid for emergency medical technicians: Can it work?
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Mental ill-health in firefighters deployed to the Fort McMurray Fire
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Standard vs. enhanced reconsolidation therapy for public safety personnel: A pilot study
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Suicide amongst public safety personnel compared to the general population in Ontario: A case-control study
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Research 101 for public safety personnel Course development and pilot testing
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A randomized control trial examining the treatment efficacy of a novel approach to cognitive remediation in public safety personnel with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and co-morbid conditions
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Identifying the impact of formal and informal critical incident interventions on firefighters’ exposure to posttraumatic stress injury in a Northwestern Ontario fire service
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