Ralf Pansch, director of contracting and residential services/disaster services coordinator for the Macon County Mental Health Board earned Certification of Critical Incident Stress Management (CCISM). The goal of the certification is to foster enhanced knowledge about crisis intervention and disaster response from the Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) perspective. He is one of fewer than 800 people worldwide to have earned this certification.
The CCISM Certification, offered by the University of Maryland Baltimore County’s Department of Emergency Health Services, in coordination with the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation, is the world’s first university-based certification in the field of CISM and psychological crisis intervention. CISM is a method of helping first responders and others who have been involved in critical incidents that leave them emotionally and/or physically affected by those incidents.
CISM is a process that enables peers to help their peers understand problems that might occur after an event. This process also helps people prepare to continue to perform their services or in some cases return to a normal lifestyle. The mission of the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation is to provide leadership, education, training, consultation, and support services in comprehensive crisis intervention and disaster behavioral health services to the emergency response professions, other organizations, and communities worldwide.
The Macon County Mental Health Board is a unit of local government that distributes funding to various organizations to provide services for residents of Macon County related to mental illness/mental health, developmental disabilities, and substance use. The mission of the Board is to assure that a comprehensive and coordinated system of effective and efficient public mental health services is available and accessible to all citizens of Macon County in need of such services. The Macon County Mental Health Board supports services for more than 12,000 individuals in Macon County annually.