A retired North Bay paramedic is helping other medics manage their work-related post-traumatic stress through a non-profit group she founded.
Officers who respond to emergencies from fires to protests can literally bring their work home.
Former paramedic Susan Farren says that stress built up over time can haunt them in forms like depression, stroke, even suicidal thoughts.
“So often, we’re trained on how to protect buildings and lives, but we’re not trained to take care of ourselves,” Farren said.
So she founded First Responder Resiliency, Inc. in Santa Rosa in 2018. The nonprofit has held 50 conferences and taught more than 4,000 emergency officers nationwide on how to prepare for trauma before it happens.
“You can’t run a fatal car crash, a cardiac arrest, a felony stop and a fire and not expect that your body and your nervous system are not going to be impacted,” Farren said.