Critical Incident Stress Management FAQ

1. Will the local CISM team respond to family emergency situations, such as an abusive husband or a son who is involved in drugs?

The Virginia CISM teams respond to emergency services agencies (EMS, fire and police), after a critical incident.  You may find assistance through your county’s mental health department.

2. Why is there a higher concentration of CISM teams in the northern Virginia area than the rest of the state?

The majority of the Virginia CISM teams are managed at the EMS regional council level, except in the northern Virginia area.   CISM started in Virginia in the Alexandria and Arlington County areas, after the Air Florida air crash.  The CISM program was then started in each county in that area – and has remained so.

3. What do I have to do to join a Virginia CISM team?

You must complete the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation (ICISF) Group Crisis Intervention course and complete the requirements for the specific CISM team in your area.  Please refer the CISM portion of this web site for scheduled courses.