self-administering medication thesis




This paper is adapted from the Psychological First Aid Field Operations Guide Second

Edition published by the National Child Traumatic Stress Network/National Center for PTSD

in conjunction with Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMSHA) and

the Robert Wood Foundation.

Nature of the Disaster

An earthquake is a sudden violent shaking of the earth’s surface, caused by the shifting

of two blocks of the earth’s crust that suddenly slip past one another and pull apart. This

occurs are pressure builds up over many months and years, Stebnicki (2017). It is a natural

disaster that poses serious threats to the physical and psychological health of individuals of all

ages, cultural/ethnic backgrounds, and socioeconomic classes. The effect that is experienced

by individuals is influenced by developmental, situational, existential, interpersonal, and spiritual factors.

I have selected to complete treatment for a frail elderly person, age 81 years of white

anglo-Saxon descent. Mrs. Jennings is a widow of 18 months. The ratio of elderly males to

females ages 80 to 84 years is 53 to 100; females outlive men almost 2 to 1 in this age

category, Cavanaugh and Blanchard-Fields (2006). Lousie Jennings, a widow whose

husband died approximately one year ago. She currently resides with her daughter age 55

years, who is recently divorced. To ensure her safety during the day, Louise attends an adult

care facility, while her daughter is at work. Louis suffers from osteoarthritis; a chronic

condition that has greatly impaired her mobility. She is also beginning to show sign of

Alzheimer’s disease. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, 2017 Alzheimer’s Facts and

Figures report, approximately 43% of person ages 75-84, and 38% those age 85 years and




older suffer from this disease. Despite her mobility issues, Mrs. Jennings is quite capable of

performing most activities in daily living. The can still bathe, clothe, and feed herself, Jacobs

(2016). Additionally, she carries out instrumental activities in daily living such as using the

telephone, self-administering medication, and keeping a schedule Jacobs (2016). Her husband

died after a long illness of lung cancer, contracted after working in a manufacturing plant for

40 years.

Eight Core Actions of Psychological First Aid

Contact and Engagement

Goal- respond to contact from/or initiate contact with Mrs. Jennings.

Observe Mrs. Jennings first before approaching her.

Introduce myself to Mrs. Jennings and describe my role as a psychological first aid