SAFE-T ACT & Wellness Checks/Mental Health Screenings
Wellness Checks/“Mental Health Screenings” per SAFE-T ACT starting Jan 1 2022: A wellness check/mental health screening per SAFE-T Act is a 45 or 55 minute one-on one session with one of our licensed mental health professionals to discuss an employee’s current abilities to cope with job stressors and to learn additional healthy ways to deal with these and future stressors. The wellness check offers an opportunity for an employee to discuss coping strategies and solutions to deal with the various stressors of being a first responder. It also presents the opportunity to receive psychoeducation about individual mental health wellness and for the member to be aware if they are having mental health struggles. The wellness check is not a fitness for duty evaluation and is not a form of punishment. The wellness check is not intended to diagnose a member with a mental health disorder. If a first responder presents with mental health issues, the clinician will recommend the employee seek treatment voluntarily and they will be given relevant resources. The department will not be told any information that is shared in the one-on-one meeting. The wellness check is not a fitness for duty, it is considered training and psychoeducation. If the department feels a member needs a fitness for duty, then please follow your department policies for a fitness for duty. During the wellness check, our clinicians will begin by discussing confidentiality. The only information that is shared with the department or county would be the employee’s name and attendance date. All conversations shared with the mental health professionals are confidential except in the following circumstance, as is required by law: 1) An employee is deemed an immediate threat to themselves or another 2) An employee discloses that they are abusing a child, elderly, or disabled person.
The First Responders Wellness Center would be willing to conduct the wellness checks at a confidential location at your facility or one of our offices in Lombard or Northfield. At the wellness check, first responders are typically asked to sign their name on an attendance sheet that will be forwarded to their department. The first responder is informed that this is the only documentation that is provided to the police department. After the clinician discusses confidentiality, they will examine the stressors of working in law enforcement or fire safety and to normalize many of the stressors. Please contact us to discuss the wellness checks if you are interested. 630-909-9093 or firstname.lastname@example.org