Painted Cave Wildfires, Santa Barbara, California
Hurricane Katrina, Gulf Coast
After Hurricanes Katrina and Rita ravaged the states of Louisiana and Mississippi, Dr. Jones was deployed to the area for the SAMHSA mental health consultant group. Reaching the area less than three weeks after the disaster, Dr. Jones traveled to both Louisiana and later to Gulfport, Mississippi where he served as a team leader. Since then Dr. Jones has traveled to the area on five occasions. His work in the area has included visits to schools, disaster recovery centers, and state offices. Most notably, Dr. Jones met with First Lady Laura Bush at Celebration Church outside Baton Rouge, where they and other officials participated in a briefing discussing conditions and needs of children affected by Katrina.
Dr. Jones and his team at the Gulf Coast Mental Health Center
Harvard Medical School Study
Dr. Jones has also been appointed to the Hurricane Katrina Community Advisory Group administered by the Department of Health Care Policy at the Harvard Medical School. This group is conducting a random national survey of 250,000 homes (funded by the National Institute on Mental Health) to ascertain the mental health consequences of the hurricanes. The researchers will identify a cohort of approximately 2000 individuals directly affected and displaced by the hurricanes and follow them for 2 years to assess their level of coping with physical and mental health issues, as well as the logistical difficulties associated with relocating or returning to some sense of a normal routine. The initial wave of data collection should provide some first impressions by the end of March.