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HEROES FIRST RESPONDERS PROGRAM

Substance Use and Mental Health Training and Support for Texas First Responders


About

Alcohol and drug use, PTSD, compassion fatigue and suicide are but a few of the occupational hazards faced by first responders.

We understand that seeking treatment for these issues is not always easy or desirable, given the very real threats of stigma and possible occupational repercussions unique to the first responder profession

Our Helpline provides an entirely confidential, free, telephonic support and referral service that affords first responders the opportunity to seek treatment without fear of judgment, stigma or occupational threats.

We also provide online CE training providing first responders with the tools and information to recognize and address substance use and mental health issues of their own or of their peers

In person training and advocacy programs provide a group training option for departments looking for speaker sessions and live Q&A sessions regarding substance use and mental health disorders


Heroes First Responder Program Helpline

Referral and Recovery Support for Texas First Responders

The Heroes Helpline is a free, confidential service implemented to help first responders across Texas who may be experiencing symptoms of mental health or substance use disorders. We provide a brief telephone-based screening and referral intervention to assist individuals overcome barriers to substance use disorders or mental health disorders by navigating them to treatment and recovery.

Who is eligible?

  • Adult 18+ first responders in Texas (career or volunteer, active or retired law enforcement officer, firefighter, dispatchers, EMT, paramedic)
  • Any first responder experiencing signs and/or symptoms of substance use or mental health disorders

What do we do?

  • Discuss substance use or mental health concern with callers
  • Identify treatment options and connect callers to treatment based on their needs
  • Provide referrals to ensure confidential linkage to care
  • Offer follow-up phone-based peer support by a certified Peer Recovery Support Specialist (PRSS)
  • Navigate to social services, if needed (housing, transportation, employment)

How can you help?

  • Work with us to connect our first responders to treatment
  • Let us know if you will accept referrals from our service
  • Maintain confidentiality for first responder privacy
  • Please share the toll-free helpline number 1-833-EMS-IN-TX (367-4689)


Heroes First Responder Program Education

First Responders Education and Advocacy for Texas First Responders


The First Responders Educational Campaign is a free, research-based learning service implemented to provide first responders across Texas with information regarding substance use and mental health disorders.


Our materials cover mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, PTSD and compassion fatigue; and substance use issues including alcoholic use and opioid use disorders, among others.


Our self-paced, online CE training provides first responders with the tools and information necessary to recognize and address symptoms of substance use and mental health disorders in themselves or others


In-person training and advocacy provides a group learning session for departments seeking live presentations and Q&A sessions











What do we do?

  • Provide online and in-person training on substance use and mental health issues among first responders Help first responders recognize symptoms of substance use and mental health disorders in themselves and others
  • Confidentially identify treatment and support options for first responders
  • Grant continuing education (CE) credits, when applicable
  • Offer a toll-free confidential helpline to discuss substance use and mental health, and to provide referrals to treatment


Who is eligible?

  • Any career or volunteer first responder (law enforcement officer, firefighter, dispatcher, EMT, paramedic), active or retired, in Texas.

How can you help?

  • Allow us to present our content to you and your staff
  • Please share or call the toll-free helpline number 1-833-EMS-IN-TX (367-4689)


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CONTACT

For support, call our toll-free helpline

Phone: 1-833-367-4689 | 1-833-EMS-INTX

James Langabeer, PhD, EMT, MBA
Program Director
713-500-3925
James.r.langabeer@uth.tmc.edu

Meredith O’Neal
Research Coordinator
713-500-3624
Meredith.m.oneal@uth.tmc.edu

Simone Joannou
Training Coordinator
713-500-3599
Simone.l.joannou@uth.tmc.edu