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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 38  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 205-208

Impact of lockdown and psychological first aid: A case study

1 Department of Clinical Psychology, Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences, Delhi, India
2 Department of Psychiatric Social Work, Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences, Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Ruchi Varma
Department of Clinical Psychology, Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences, Dilshad Garden, Delhi - 110 095
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijsp.ijsp_446_20

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Introduction: The COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdown declared by the Indian Government in March 2020 lead to an unexpected turn of events for many, causing a huge psychosocial impact on them. Methodology: The study focused on evaluating a family from Kerala with major language difficulties and the distress being faced by them during their stay in the government provided shelter home in Delhi. The family was assessed by the multidisciplinary team from the Institute of Human Behavior and Allied Sciences visiting various shelter homes across the state. The study was aimed to assess the importance of psychological first aid (PFA) on the individual and the family in distress. Results: The family was assessed by the student counselor, who was well versed in their native language Malayalam. They were able to connect well, and hence, an appropriate psychosocial intervention was provided to them under the guidance of her supervisor. The family was highly distressed and had almost developed xenophobia. They were very happy to get a Malayalam-speaking counselor and were provided with all possible support. The authorities were also explained about their specific needs, which was not possible earlier due to the language barrier. They were ultimately successfully integrated with the other residents and returned to their home state, i.e., Kerala. Conclusion: Although PFA is definitely not a substitute for mental health care, ample research and experience has shown that it is a useful tool to assist people in acute distress when applied with a truly professional yet sensitive, empathetic approach.

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