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Podcast: Air Medical Today Episode 30

Jonathan Bundt intro-2:48

  • Organizational consultant and trainer with Masa Consulting since 1993

  • Provides support to Life Link

  • Degrees in child psychology, Jewish studies, counseling and psychotherapy and course work in human resource development and counseling psychology

  • Worked in Israel from 1987-1993

  • Employee, assistance program counselor, stress team member with the American Red Cross, psychological consultant with Hennepin county sheriff’s department, adjunct faculty member in human and organizational development in police psychology at the Alfred Adler graduate school, a behavioral scientist consultant with Minneapolis police department swat team, and private practice psycho therapist

Experience working with police in light of recent events- 5:12

  • Knows the department and spent years as mental health professional with Minneapolis swat team

  • Anyone who is a cop and looks at what happens and tries to justify it should not be wearing a badge

  • Police tapes still haven’t been released

  • There is immense stress in the day to day work of being a cop

  • There are peaceful protesters, but media focuses on rioting and looting

  • Many business that were damaged were family owned and minorizing businesses

Experience in Israel- 12:14

  • Come from Jewish faith background

  • Felt connection and sense of belonging to Israel

  • Israel created sense of purpose

  • After high school studied in yeshiva (seminary for Jewish faith)

  • Came back to US to get undergraduate degree in psychology and then came to Israel and worked with people with addiction

  • Served in the Israeli army in combat unit

  • Joined Israeli national police force in counter anti-terrorism unit and then became trainer

  • Took leave of absence from police force after 5 collogues died and did not think team did a great job of handling it

  • Got graduate degree in counseling psychology

  • Different culture in Israel- more in your face

  • Dual citizenship

Meaning behind “Masa”- 24:05

  • Masa comes from Hebrew word

  • Wanted name of organization to represent experiences he has had

  • In the Israeli military you have basic training and as you get to the end you have experience called masa aluca (journey stretcher)

    • Training where you are carrying a wounded solider

    • It is physically and mentally exhausting

  • Masa can mean either journey or burden

  • Wants to help people on their journeys as they are overcoming burdens/ being a victim

Psychological first aid- 30:30

  • Similar to regular first aid

  • Teaches about psychological first aid

  • First, talk about the severity of incidence

  • Pandemics come in waves and we don’t know what it is going to look like

    • So many unknowns and that creates a great deal of stress

  • Lack of singular guidance and clarity is being tested

  • No sense of control when it comes to the virus, but control when it comes to choices

  • There are opportunities during this time to discover new things, connect and spend quality time together

  • Need to be intentional when looking for opportunities for growth

  • Other industries are taking a very hard hit (restaurants, entertainment industry)

Disaster behavioral health and health care during COVID- 42:02

  • Has done a lot of responses to pandemics, but nothing has come to this magnitude

  • This pandemic checks so many of the boxes that cause it to be traumatic

  • Stressors ripple out into personal life

Ground and air medical crews- 45:35

  • Organizations need to have systems of wellness and support in place

  • Most air services have employee assistance program

  • Peer support programs

    • Having people on call

  • Having supervisors that are trained in stress and stress management and can notice certain behaviors

    • This is critical from a safety perspective

  • Mental health professionals that understand the work

Cumulative stress- 54:00

  • Long hours, outside of work events (personal life), financial issues

  • Stress never really comes down enough to allow you to breath and relax

  • If don’t release cumulative stress it will build physiologically in body

  • Cumulative stress will then start to impact others

Strategies for cumulative stress- 58:55

  • Stop and recognize that stress is happening

  • Welcome and agree with stress and notice its effects

  • Find something that is helpful and works for you

  • Personally: doing more outdoors, weeding

  • Need to be intentional about stress relief actions

    • Creates more meaning

  • Also need to be flexible, adaptable and open to new things

  • Can’t make people do these things, there needs to be a better dialogue

  • Need to have confidence to have honest conversations

  • Help direct to resources

Difference between triggers (acute) and cumulative stress- 1:10:20

  • Acute stress: overtime it decreases

  • More work to identify cumulative stress

Financial stress with COVID- 1:14:00

  • Individuals and health care providers

  • Not able to give other types of procedures and patients are worried about going to the hospital

  • People are losing health insurance because they are no longer employed

  • Need to have basic need of finance to get through other struggles and stressors

  • For the first time in a long time health care staff are getting laid off

Coping with the protest- 1:19:45

  • Minimize engagement to media, so that you are not stressed out

Health care providers as heroes?- 1:23:20

  • Some staff feel uncomfortable with people called a hero because they think they are just doing their jobs

  • Don’t always feel heroic because there is death and risks

  • Other health care staff like the recognition for all their efforts

  • Tricky topic we need to open up to and have a conversation about

  • Other ways to express gratitude: food, saying thank you

Post traumatic growth- 1:31:05

  • Refers to positive personality, development, growth after some high stress traumatic event

  • Traumatic event facilitates ability to grow

  • A newer concept within mental health field

  • Part of positive psychology movement

  • Not looking for disorder, looking for development

  • It is hard because need to be able to recognize “end point”

How has COVID 19 changed how you are doing work? - 1:35:07

  • Figuring out different strategies while also social distancing

Integrating mental health professionals- 1:38:05

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