COVID-19 Behavioral Health Resources

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Center for Deployment Psychology has developed a collection of resources designed to help providers support military-connected patients while simultaneously adapting themselves to changing circumstances. You’ll find information below about delivering services via telehealth modalities, addressing symptoms and concerns of specific patient populations, and coping with your own reactions to the current crisis. We will update this page and add new resources as they become available. Last updated 29 May 2020 (Click to see the most recent updates)

Click on the links below to jump directly to the resources for that category.

Behavioral Health Service Delivery Resources for Military Families Addressing Broad Mental Health Needs
Working with Specific Populations Adjusting to Full-time Teleworking and Social Distancing Other Organizations

Please note that we have sourced information from a number of reliable sources. The appearance of external hyperlinks does not constitute endorsement by the United States Department of Defense (DoD), the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS) or the Henry M. Jackson Foundation of the linked websites or the information, products or services contained therein.

Resources for Behavioral Health Service Delivery

Maintaining Capacity During Covid 19: An Opportunity for Clinicians to Utilize Telehealth Resources - Resources for behavioral health providers who are implementing telehealth services for the first time. Includes guidance from professional associations, information about reimbursement, and educational opportunities.

Webinar: Suddenly Telehealth - How to Implement EBPs with Fidelity and Effectiveness - Due to the rapid spread of COVID-19, an unprecedented number of clinicians are scrambling to take their practice online. A particular concern for clinicians working with Service members is adapting EBPs for telehealth. In this webinar, CDP staff will provide practice advice for adapting EBPs for for PTSD, depression, and Sleep Problems for use in telehealth.

Q&A from the Suddenly Telehealth Webinar presentation - This PDF containins several additional questions and answers that weren't able to be addressed during the original presentation of the "Suddenly Telehealth" webinar.

Staff Perspective: Can EBPs Be Delivered by Videoconferencing or Telephone? - As providers struggle to continue to deliver evidence-based psychotherapy without face-to-face contact, questions arise about adaptations for videoconferencing and even telephone-only delivery of services. This blog summarizes recommendations from our consultants on how to quickly adapt services in light of the coronavirus outbreak. 

Collecting Self-Report Assessment Data via Telehealth - A tip sheet on how to administer and review self-report measures via telehealth. Suggestions are provided whether assessment is being conducted via telephone or videoconferencing.

Telehealth Vlog: With the evolving health crisis related to COVID-19, an unprecedented number of mental health practitioners are taking their practice online to provide continuity of care and continue to ensure access to services for military clients and families. Understandably, such a quick and major transition can be stressful. In this video blog, Drs. Jeff Mann and Andy Santanello discuss some of their experiences in providing telehealth services over the last several years and touch on many of the common challenges providers who are new to telehealth may encounter. (PDF Transcript)
To access the resource mentioned by Dr. Mann, click here: https://www.hhs.gov/about/news/2020/03/17/ocr-announces-notification-of-enforcement-discretion-for-telehealth-remote-communications-during-the-covid-19.html

Telehealth in Adobe Connect Quick-Start Guide (PDF) - A concise reference tool for providers using Adobe Connect.

Adobe Connect Patient Guide (PDF) - A quick-start guide for patients using Adobe Connect for telehealth sessions.

Staff Perspective: Considerations for Telehealth and Using CBT-I Coach Mobile App - Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, behavioral healthcare providers are facing numerous challenges, including the rapid transition from delivering in-person care to providing telehealth services for patients. Research has demonstrated multiple benefits of using mobile app technology. This blog will focus on reviewing key ethical issues to consider when using mobile apps while providing telehealth services, using the CBT-I Coach mobile app as an example.

Telehealth Guidelines Organized by State (From APA): State emergency orders relevant to licensed psychologists during the COVID-19 public health crisis.

EBP-Specific Telehealth Resources - A collection of resources designed to faciliate the use of EBPs in a telehealth environment.

Moving Behavioral Sleep Medicine Interventions to Telehealth - Resources to implement a variety of behavioral sleep interventions via telehealth. 

Patient Forms - A page where patients can be directed to download forms and handouts commonly used in psychotherapy. 


Resources for Military Families

Ask the Experts: Tips for Military Families During the COVID-19 Crisis - While many organizations offer helpful suggestions for talking with children about the COVID-19 crisis, few specifically address the unique challenges currently faced by military families. We reached out to a few experts who work with children and adolescents to fill in some of these gaps.

Staff Perspective: The Challenges of COVID-19 on Military Families and the Resilience of Military Kids - As our soldiers rapidly respond to contain and combat COVID-19, military families are charged with the familiar mission of supporting our nations troops in the face of uncertainty.

Resources for Military Couples - Supporting relationships during this time of pandemic and stay-at-home orders is especially important to individuals’ mental health. This page highlights resources focused on couples to help them navigate stressors and strengthen connections.

Resources for Military Families - Navigating resources for military-connected families can be challenging to access during this global pandemic, so virtual resources are crucial. Fortunately, several useful tools exist to support military families and to help parents talk with children about Coronavirus.


Addressing Broad Mental Health Needs

Staff Perspective: My Experience with Mental Illness and COVID-19 - Coping with a mental illness is always difficult, but the COVID-19 pandemic presents additional challenges. The author shares her personal story of how the pandemic has impacted her treatment and how she is practicing self-care. She offers helpful suggestions for those coping with behavioral health conditions and their support systems.

Creating a Healthy Mind-Set During a Pandemic (PDF) - It's normal to have negative thoughts that pop into our minds, especially when in the midst of a pandemic. We provide examples of more balanced ways of thinking, which can create more healthy thoughts and in turn calm our emotional reactions.

General Sleep Tips (PDF) - A set of strategies for getting sleep back on track after a stressful, life-disrupting event.

Getting the Most Out of Your Group Telehealth Sessions: Tips for Providers - Guidance for providers implementing group therapy over telehealth

Getting the Most Out of Your Group Telehealth Sessions: Tips for Patients - Guidance for patients logging in for group therapy sessions.

COVID Coach App - A link to a new, free app from the VA's National Center for PTSD. The COVID Coach App was created for everyone, including Service members and Veterans, to suppor self-care and overall mental health during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.


Resources for Working with Specific Populations

Helping Patients Combat OCD Symptoms When the Danger is Real - A resource for providers using Exposure and Response Prevention with patients during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Considerations for Providers Treating Patients with PTSD During the COVID-19 Outbreak - Anticipating the changing needs of patients with PTSD and recommendations for treatment.

Self-Care Tips for Hospitalized or Quarantined Patients - Patients who are physically isolated are likely to struggle with an increased stress response at the same time that they have limited coping resources available to them. Tips are provided to help you practice basic self-care while hospitalized or quarantined. A list of potentially useful free apps are also provided.

Staff Perspective: On the Front Lines - Helping Our Helpers  - As we navigate through these unprecedented times, as helping professionals, we prepare ourselves to help those patients who come our way. What we are less prepared for, are those times that our patients are one of us. The author answers the question, “How does caring for one of our own affect our work during this time of crisis?”

A Guide to Support the Well-Being of Healthcare Personnel During a Time of Crisis - CDP contributed to the National Center for Disaster Medicine and Public Health (NCDMPH)'s resource on helping healthcare personnel. This tool is designed for healthcare workers to quickly navigate to evidence-based information from USU partners, including the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress, the Center for Deployment Psychology, and the Consortium for Health and Military Performance.

Staff Perspective: Telehealth and Couples Counseling - Considerations for Providers  - Delivering behavioral health services remotely is particularly relevant right now. This Staff Perspective column, by CDP's April Thompson, takes a look at considerations for presenting couples counseling via telehealth, including safey, managing conflict, the therapy process, and more.

Redeploying Healthcare Workers After a Crisis Response (PDF) - Stress-management skills for healthcare workers before, during, and after a disaster response.


Adjusting to Full-time Teleworking and Social Distancing

Adjusting to Telework Vlog: As many struggle to adapt to full-time telework during the COVID-19 outbreak, CDP's veteran teleworkers share tips for maintaining productivity, addressing obstacles, and maintaining a work/life balance. They discuss their ideal telework plans as well as how they've adjusted to changing demands during this crisis. (PDF Transcript)

Staff Perspective: COVID-19 and Self-Reintegration - Current social-distancing has limited ways we cope with both internal and external stressors. The less we are able to distract ourselves with the external world, the more time we have to listen to our own thoughts. How do we and our patients cope with personal demons when usual distractions are out of reach? What about those of us who are loving isolation because it has cut down on the external stressors?

Social Distancing Resources - The stress of COVID-19 social distancing is very real, but no one has to suffer alone. Many organizations and agencies have compiled resources to both give information about what to expect as well as resources to help people cope. Some of these resources are listed here.


Other organizations that may help you structure your practice

American Psychiatric Association: https://www.psychiatry.org/psychiatrists/covid-19-coronavirus
American Psychological Association: https://www.apa.org/practice/programs/dmhi/research-information/pandemics
National Register of Health Service Psychologists: https://www.nationalregister.org/coronavirus-resources/
The Trust (APA): https://www.trustinsurance.com/Resouces/Articles/guidance-for-practitioners-coronavirus-covid-19
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: https://asprtracie.hhs.gov/technical-resources/115/covid-19-behavioral-health-resources/99


Recently Added

Added 29 May

Q&A from the Suddenly Telehealth Webinar presentation - This PDF containins several additional questions and answers that weren't able to be addressed during the original presentation of the "Suddenly Telehealth" webinar.

Added 27 May

Collecting Self-Report Assessment Data via Telehealth - A tip sheet on how to administer and review self-report measures via telehealth. Suggestions are provided whether assessment is being conducted via telephone or videoconferencing.

Added 15 May

Webinar: Suddenly Telehealth - How to Implement EBPs with Fidelity and Effectiveness - Due to the rapid spread of COVID-19, an unprecedented number of clinicians are scrambling to take their practice online. A particular concern for clinicians working with Service members is adapting EBPs for telehealth. In this webinar, CDP staff will provide practice advice for adapting EBPs for for PTSD, depression, and Sleep Problems for use in telehealth.

Added 14 May

Staff Perspective: COVID-19 and Self-Reintegration - Current social-distancing has limited ways we cope with both internal and external stressors. The less we are able to distract ourselves with the external world, the more time we have to listen to our own thoughts. How do we and our patients cope with personal demons when usual distractions are out of reach? What about those of us who are loving isolation because it has cut down on the external stressors?

Added 11 May

Resources for Military Couples - Supporting relationships during this time of pandemic and stay-at-home orders is especially important to individuals’ mental health. This page highlights resources focused on couples to help them navigate stressors and strengthen connections.

Added 8 May

Staff Perspective: The Challenges of COVID-19 on Military Families and the Resilience of Military Kids - As our soldiers rapidly respond to contain and combat COVID-19, military families are charged with the familiar mission of supporting our nations troops in the face of uncertainty.

Added 6 May

Staff Perspective: Telehealth and Couples Counseling - Considerations for Providers  - Delivering behavioral health services remotely is particularly relevant right now. This Staff Perspective column, by CDP's April Thompson, takes a look at considerations for presenting couples counseling via telehealth, including safey, managing conflict, the therapy process, and more.

Added 30 April

A Guide to Support the Well-Being of Healthcare Personnel During a Time of Crisis - CDP contributed to the National Center for Disaster Medicine and Public Health (NCDMPH)'s resource on helping healthcare personnel. This tool is designed for healthcare workers to quickly navigate to evidence-based information from USU partners, including the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress, the Center for Deployment Psychology, and the Consortium for Health and Military Performance.

Staff Perspective: Telehealth and Couples Counseling - Considerations for Providers  - Delivering behavioral health services remotely is particularly relevant right now. This Staff Perspective column, by CDP's April Thompson, takes a look at considerations for presenting couples counseling via telehealth, including safey, managing conflict, the therapy process, and more.