Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield would like to make the public aware of a resource developed to assist those experiencing mental distress as a result of the incident in Christchurch.

“The Ministry of Health and 1737 have created resources which give advice for those experiencing mental distress, including how to help and support children, and help with grief,” says Dr Bloomfield.

“After a traumatic event, for people directly involved, who have family and friends involved, who work in services that are part of the response to the event, and for the wider community, it is normal to feel distressed, and to experience symptoms of stress.”

“There are a number of symptoms people may experience. This document helps identify these and ways people can help each other and themselves. These kinds of feelings and symptoms are part of our normal reaction to a traumatic event, and for most people they pass over several days or weeks.”

“The Ministry is working to translate this document into a range of languages, and will be updating their website as and when these translations are completed.”

“It’s important for anyone in mental distress to know if you need support with grief, anxiety, distress or mental wellbeing, you can call or text 1737 – free, anytime, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – to talk it through with a trained counsellor.”

The resources are available to view here.


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