Critical Incident Stress Management

Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) is a comprehensive, integrated, systematic, and multi-component crisis intervention programme.

The Crisis Clinic can provide your organisation with this highly effective method of enhancing recovery processes, and has the most experienced CISM team in the UK.

CISM provides an overarching approach that covers all the stages from pre-incident education, through on-scene support to recovery or referral. Fully integrated, CISM ensures smooth and meaningful transitions between interventions and phases of the aftermath of a critical incident.

This systematic, well-designed network of practical processes re-establish skills and confidence, and the multi-component nature of CISM provides range and variety of tools that can be employed individually or in combination to see the optimum outcome for colleagues post-incident.

CISM is designed to meet the emotional demands that can be made from being involved in a critical incident – an event with the power to overwhelm your coping ability.


Group Crisis Intervention

The core CISM methodology used by The Crisis Centre is the ICISF’s Group Crisis Intervention. It teaches four interventions – two small-group interventions to apply in the hours and days that follow a critical incident, and two large-group interventions for protracted and resource-sapping disasters.


A 20-45 minutes small-group intervention run by two facilitators to assess individuals on return from involvement in a critical incident. One leads, educates and supports, while the other assesses and assists.

Critical Incident Stress Debriefing (CISD):

A 1-3 hour small-group intervention for more serious and complicated critical incidents to be run in the days or early weeks that follow. A CISD can be triggered by a Defusing or by an incident that is self-evidently complicated or ‘critical’. Despite CISD has been granted ‘evidence-based’ status for use in prescribed settings.

Crisis Management Briefing (CMB):

A large-group intervention for up to 300 people from a community such as at a ‘town-hall’ meeting or large press-briefing. It is delivered by an authority figure from the response organisation in partnership with a facilitator to bring reliable information, sound guidance and ongoing-support to those affected.


A large-group intervention for up to 200 responders to the emergency delivered whilst crews assemble for refreshment and decompression prior to leaving the scene of the incident. Rest and informational updates are key elements of effective demobilisations leading to successful transition between incident and stand-down periods.


The Crisis Centre can provide CISM services on a ‘pop-up’ basis as and when required by your organisation during the operational phase and aftermath of a critical incident. We are proud to have facilitated CISM in the aftermath of a number of significant incidents including 9/11, Typhoon Haiyan, the Croydon Tram de-railment, and the terror attacks of Westminster and London Bridge/Borough Market. Our most recent deployment was as part of the Grenfell Tower recovery operation.

We continue to support a number of key infrastructure agencies in preparedness for future critical incidents.

For further details or if you have any queries, please contact us here

Cism was Listed in 2017 with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) the mental health arm of the US Government’s Department of Health and Human Services. The credit for this listing is rightly attributed to Dr John Durkin of Social Support Systems CIC whose hard work and commitment has undoubtedly changed the face of psychotraumatology throughout the world.