Psychological First Aid did respond to an acute need in humanitarian action. It has spread so widely and so fast that we do forget that the manual was only publicised in 2011. The Church of Sweden has supported a capitalisation of the approach, peer reviewed by the members of IASC's MHPSS working group.
The retrospective provides example of PFA uses, has gathered evidences and testimonies from field actors documenting different ways of training, impact on staff and the affected population, its strengths, weakness and key recommendations.
The comprehensive and simple presentation is both the key to its success and its weakness: it is accessible, the tools are simple to use and it provides basic elements to consider mental health (do no harm). Its weakness is that some may look at PFA as specific MHPSS intervention, not as a "basic support" tool for field workers, but as sole MHPSS intervention without clear limitations.
Its key success is that it had helped to bring mental health, staff care and psycho social needs forward, to actors who did not engage with it.
The report can be found here: