Chapter 11. The Necessity of Debriefing after Disaster Incidents


Chrysa Papapanou¹ and Michail Chalaris²
¹Department of Institute of Management of Manmade and Natural Disasters, Educational Research Center, Athens, Greece
²Department Of Chemistry, International Hellenic University, Kavala, Greece

Part of the book: The Challenges of Disaster Planning, Management, and Resilience


Throughout the 21st century, humanity has already recorded enormous technological progress, developing the necessary techniques not only for the effective response to a mass casualty event, but also for a smooth and complete restoration. In the context of the effective management of a critical event and especially during the recovery phase, the necessity of the application of the debriefing method is examined thoroughly in this chapter. This chapter could also be characterized as a hybrid product of methodology as it consists of two main parts. The first part is based on the literature review in order to examine the process of the debriefing technique, citing historical data of the evolution of the technique over the years. The method itself was then analyzed in depth indicating its stages as also whether its conduction is influenced by the interculturality. In the second part of this chapter, statistics are presented for the debriefing process that emerged after a survey through a structured questionnaire processed through the SPSS program, to a targeted sample of people involved in the management of critical incidents, giving a glimpse of the Greek approach to the method of debriefing. The processing of the data collection led to the conclusion that although debriefing is globally considered a necessary method for the integrated management of a critical incident, nevertheless in Greece it is not carried out on a regular basis as a standardized procedure. In addition, the absence of a mental health professional during the process cannot be overlooked.

Keywords: debriefing, debriefing strategies, crisis management, experiential learning, psychological debriefing


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