Virtual Mental Health First Aid Training
Mental Health First Aid is a public education program that introduces participants to risk factors and warning signs of mental illnesses, builds understanding of their impact, and overviews common supports. This is a 2 hour self-paced course, combined with a live instructor led course and uses role-playing and simulations to demonstrate how to offer initial help in a mental health crisis and connect persons to the appropriate professional, peer, social, and self-help care. The program also teaches the common risk factors and warning signs of specific types of illnesses, like anxiety, depression, substance use, bipolar disorder, eating disorders, and schizophrenia.
Mental Health First Aid is included on the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices (NREPP).
- Mental Health First Aid teaches participants a five-step action plan, ALGEE, to support someone developing signs and symptoms of a mental illness or in an emotional crisis:
- Assess for risk of suicide or harm
- Listen nonjudgmentally
- Give reassurance and information
- Encourage appropriate professional help
- Encourage self-help and other support strategies
Like CPR, Mental Health First Aid prepares participants to interact with a person in crisis and connect the person with help. First Aiders do not take on the role of professionals — they do not diagnose or provide any counseling or therapy. Instead, the program offers concrete tools and answers key questions, like “what do I do?” and “where can someone find help?” Certified Mental Health First Aid instructors provide a list of community healthcare providers and national resources, support groups, and online tools for mental health and addictions treatment and support. All trainees receive a program manual to compliment the course material.
Mental Health First Aid was introduced in the U.S. in 2008 and, to date, hundreds of thousands of people from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico have taken the course. The course is offered to a variety of audiences, including hospital staff, employers and business leaders, faith communities, and law enforcement.
Approximately 400 people are being trained each day with that number expected to increase.
In 2012, Youth Mental Health First Aid was introduced to prepare trainees to help youth ages 12-18 that may be developing or experiencing a mental health challenge. And in 2014 two specialized versions were introduced, Mental Health First Aid for Veterans and Mental Health First Aid for First Responders.
Mental Health First Aid was included in the President’s plan to reduce gun violence and increase access mental health services. In 2014 Congress appropriated $15 million to SAMHSA for training teachers and school personnel in the youth version of Mental Health first Aid; and another $15 million is included in the President’s 2015 budget proposal. The Mental Health First Aid (S.153/H.R. 274) has broad bi-partisan support and would authorize $20 million annually for training the American public. Fifteen states have made Mental Health First Aid a priority, appropriating state funds including Texas that has allocated $5 million.
Youth Mental Health First Aid
Youth Mental Health First Aid is designed to teach parents, family members, caregivers, teachers, school staff, peers, neighbors, health and human services workers, and other caring citizens how to help an adolescent (age 12-18) who is experiencing a mental health or addictions challenge or is in crisis. Youth Mental Health First Aid is primarily designed for adults who regularly interact with young people. The course introduces common mental health challenges for youth, reviews typical adolescent development, and teaches a 5-step action plan for how to help young people in both crisis and non-crisis situations. Topics covered include anxiety, depression, substance use, disorders in which psychosis may occur, disruptive behavior disorders (including AD/HD), and eating disorders.
Who Should Attend
This training is designed for MSU Extension employees. Each class is limited to 20 people so register early.
The 8-hour live instructor led training will occur on Zoom. More information about the self-paced course will be sent to participants via email after completing registration. Participants are encouraged to have their video on during the Zoom presentations to ensure participation for certification.
Mental Health First Aid training includes a 2-hour self-paced course, followed by a live instructor led training that is 8 hours for adult trainings and 6.5 hours for youth trainings. Participants who do not complete the self-paced portion or attend the full instructor led day will not be eligible to receive a certificate of completion.
April 23, 2021 - 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST (OPTION IS FULL)
May 4, 2021 - 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST (OPTION IS FULL)
New! - August 17, 2021 - 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST
New! - September 17, 2021 - 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST
New! - October 5, 2021 - 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST
March 15, 2021 - 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST (OPTION IS FULL)
March 24, 2021 - 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST (OPTION IS FULL)
New! - June 14, 2021 - 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST
New! - July 22, 2021 - 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST
New! - August 16, 2021 - 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST
There is no charge for the program. Participants who register and fail to cancel and no-show will be charged a cancellation fee.
Participants who do not complete the self-paced portion, attend the full instructor led day or do not complete the post-work and evaluation will not be eligible to receive a certificate of completion. Participants who register for an adult program and fail to cancel at least three business days prior and no-show will have their MSU accounts charged a $30 cancellation fee. Participants who register for a youth program and fail to cancel at least three business days prior and no-show will have their MSU accounts charged a $25 cancellation fee.
For more resources regarding Mental Health First Aid, please go to MentalHealthFirstAid.org.
The National Council for Mental Wellbeing, the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, and the Missouri Department of Mental Health coordinate Mental Health First Aid USA.
Registration for Virtual Mental Health First Aid USA Training is open.
Registration closes at 11:59 p.m. on September 27, 2021.
Michigan State University is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Accommodations for persons with disabilities may be requested by contacting the event contact two weeks prior to the start of the event. Requests received after this date will be honored whenever possible.