Academic Psychiatry

, Volume 43, Issue 1, pp 140–141 | Cite as

It Happened Here: Debriefing Groups to Help Psychiatry Residents Process Traumatic Community Events

  • Eva MathewsEmail author
  • Shanique Ampiah
  • Deonna Dodd
Feature: Letter to the Editor

To the Editor:

Community trauma happens everywhere. When these events occur, one challenge is helping your trainees take care of their patients when they also suffered—when they have lost their home, their community, or their sense of safety.

Several traumatic community events happened in the summer of 2016 in our community. Alton Sterling, an African American man, was killed by a police officer. Videos brought national attention to the case, leading to citywide protests. Less than 2 weeks later, a man shot and killed three police officers, and wounded three others. The next month, catastrophic flooding affected our area, damaging 110, 000 homes and closing many businesses and schools. Throughout this time, our hospital was treating those affected, and our trainees remained at the forefront. Knowing the potential impact of compassion fatigue, we wanted to address the effect the community events had on our trainees.

Compassion Fatigue is “the profound emotional and physical exhaustion...


Compliance with Ethical Standards


On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Academic Psychiatry 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Louisiana State University Health Sciences CenterBaton RougeUSA

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