This toolkit presents two main options to conduct surveillance of post-disaster mental health impacts. First, it inventories existing sources that yield statistics drawn from surveillance systems, population-based surveys or other databases of interest for the surveillance of mental health impacts. It then recommends standardized instruments to be used in post-disaster surveys.
The information sheets on the instruments have been designed to facilitate their use and the judicious choice of certain tools will provide a better picture of the situation in the wake of a disaster. Such a picture will afford a sound way to verify the needs of the population affected with respect to the resources and mental health services that are often crucial to help a community recover from a major disaster. In this context, surveillance could be conducted over several years. It is the authors’ hope that this toolkit can become a reference in the realm of post-disaster surveillance in Québec. The objective is to facilitate surveillance activities and to standardize surveillance indicators between different studies to ensure better spatial and temporal comparability of the population’s mental health status.