Covid-19 Psychological First Aid Service: Information and Signup
This service will no longer be available as of 12:00PM on July 31, 2020. Please refer to Walk in Clinic if you need support!
Experiencing stress associated with the COVID-19 Pandemic? You are not alone.
The BCPA Covid-19 Psychological Support Service is designed to help health care and other essential workers who are experiencing stress, anxiety, or uncertainty due to the evolving COVID-19 pandemic.
What is the BCPA COVID-19 Psychological First Aid Service?
The Psychological First Aid Service offers “Psychological First Aid” telephone calls, free of charge, to any BC resident (19+) affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. This service is being offered by the BC Psychological Association in partnership with the University of British Columbia.
What is psychological first aid?
Psychological First Aid is a brief (up to 30 minute) telephone consultation to provide you with information and strategies to help you cope with the stress associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. It is designed to help people who usually cope with daily life pretty well, but who might be feeling overwhelmed during this very stressful time. .
Is psychological first aid the same as therapy?
Psychological First Aid is not the same as psychological therapy. The psychologist who calls you is providing Psychological First Aid and not treatment.
What if after my Psychological First Aid call I decide I need more help?
You can use the Psychological First Aid Service as many times as you like. If you would like to receive a Psychological First Aid phone call again, simply fill out another online request form on the day that you would like service. You will speak to a different psychologist each time you call
What if I need more than a Psychological First Aid call?
If you feel you need more than a Psychological First Aid phone call, there are other resources available. Free services include those provided by the Canadian Mental Health Association. This is the link to their website: https://cmha.bc.ca/covid-19/.
If you feel you would benefit from obtaining formal therapeutic help from a Registered Psychologist, we encourage you to refer to the BCPA website or the College of Psychologists of British Columbia website to locate a Registered Psychologist who can provide you with longer term support. There is typically a fee for these services. The BCPA provides a referral service: https://www.psychologists.bc.ca/find_psychologist.
To find out about other mental health services in your region, call 211 or go to http://www.bc211.ca/home.
What if I am in crisis or feeling suicidal?
The Psychological First Aid Service is not the same as a crisis line. If you are in crisis, please go to https://crisiscentre.bc.ca/ or call 1-800-SUICIDE. If your crisis is an emergency, call 911. As we are providing this service on the phone, we will ask you to provide an emergency contact. Psychologists are required to collect this number in case of emergency.
Who will be calling me?
Individual psychologists registered with the College of Psychologists of British Columbia are volunteering their time to provide this service. Please note that as many psychologists are now working from home, they may be using their personal phones to contact you - be on the lookout for a call from a blocked number within 48 hrs of completing the form as this may be a psychologist calling.
How does it work?
Fill in the brief form below and a psychologist will call you within 24-48 hours. Calls are returned between 9am and 9pm, 7 days a week. *Please note that wait times may be longer on weekends.
The psychologist who speaks with you will record the date of your request, your name and phone number, the name and phone number of your emergency contact. The name of the psychologist(s) who called you and when, and the general resolution of the call, is also recorded.
Is my Information Kept Confidential?
Registered Psychologists are required to report situations of imminent risk, such as if a psychologist is convinced that a child, elderly person, or disabled person is experiencing abuse or neglect, or if they are convinced that there is an imminent risk that you will physically harm yourself or someone else. In these cases, psychologists are legally required to notify the appropriate agency or authority. In the rare circumstance in which any of these situations did arise, the psychologist would make every effort to discuss it fully with you before taking any action, and they would limit disclosure to what is legally necessary.
What happens if I miss the call from the psychologist?
If you are not able to answer when the psychologist calls, they will leave a brief message for you, and your name will remain at the top of the “active list” so that another psychologist can call again. You will receive up to two phone calls from this service. If you miss both phone calls but still require services, simply complete the form again and you will be re-added to the queue.
Concerns, Complaints, or Questions
If you have concerns that this service has not met professional standards, you may contact the College of Psychologists of British Columbia. For further information about the complaint process, please review the College's website at http://www.collegeofpsychologists.bc.ca.
General inquiries about this service can be directed to the BC Psychological Association at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Request a Support Call : Consent
By entering my information and completing this form, I am confirming that I have read and understood the information above, and that I consent to these terms. Dowload a copy here.
*If you would prefer to leave a voicemail with the requested information below, please call 1-855-527-0847
If you think you might want more than a single support call, please consider our internet based therapy service.
Resources For the Public:
- CheckingIn App: CheckingIn is a free and private mental health check-in app to help you take a look at your mental health and wellness in light of COVID-19. It’s a quick and simple tool to help you discover patterns and behaviour impacting your mood and energy levels, and offer you a safe place to recognize and acknowledge all of your emotions. Click here for iPhone & click here for Android.
MindShift: Is anxiety getting in the way of your life? MindShift™ CBT uses scientifically proven strategies based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) to help you learn to relax and be mindful, develop more effective ways of thinking, and use active steps to take charge of your anxiety. Click here for more information.
Calm App: Sleep more, stress less, live better. Click here for more information.
Public information on incoming Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)
- Up-to-date info from the CDC on the Coronavirus
- Coronavirus: Safety and Readiness Tips for You
- Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) advice for the public
- National Library of Medicine's information on the Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV).
- Tips on how to stay healthy from the CDC
- CPA "Psychology Works" Fact Sheet: Coping with COVID-19
Self Care during the Coronavirus
- APA's tips to help you manage your anxiety, put news reports in perspective and maintain a positive outlook.
- 7 science-based strategies to cope with coronavirus anxiety
- Taking Care of Your Behavioral Health: Tips for Social Distancing, Quarantine, and Isolation During an Infectious Disease Outbreak
- Coronavirus and Mental Health: Taking Care of Ourselves During Infectious Disease Outbreaks
- Coping with Stress During Infectious Disease Outbreaks
Resources for how to speak to children about Coronavirus.
- Child Mind Institute
- NPR script
- Talking with Children: Tips for Caregivers, Parents, and Teachers During Infectious Disease Outbreak
- How to talk to Children About Difficult News
- Parent/Caregiver Guide to Helping Families with the Coronavirus
Stigma Reduction Resources
- Coronavirus threat escalates fears and bigotry
- Stigma Reduction around Coronavirus and COVID-19
- Stigma prevention and facts about COVID-19
Resources from Dr. Micheal Archer
Resources from The Canadian Psychological Association
- Corona Virus – COVID-19 Public Resources & Member Messages
- Thoughts on Record: Podcast of the Ottawa Institute of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
- Substance use and the pandemic
Resources from our members
- Dr. Erika Horwitz: Youtube Channel
- Dr. Eric Kuelker: Youtube Channel