Dr. Francine M. Roberts Psy.D.

Confidential Clinical Counseling for Adults and Couples

First Responders

FireFighters, Law Enforcement, Emergency Medical Technicians, Paramedics,

 Dispatch, Nurses and Physicians

Contrary to popular folklore, we are not hero's.  We are human and we all need support at times. 

Today first responders are challenged in ever increasing ways. With the arrival of Covid, EMT's and medics are experiencing unprecedented demands for service. Treatment protocols change rapidly, volume of calls fluctuate, and concerns about bringing illness home to family members are on the forefront. Patients without Covid may put off calling for assistance so they present with a much higher acuity. 

EMT's and medics are 'fixers' and repeated exposure to patients that have died takes an emotional toll.  

Communities are at a tipping point in addressing racial disparity. Safety concerns are heightened.  In addition, economic challenges have heightened anxiety leading to an increase in despair related dis-ease such as addiction, violence suicide, and domestic conflict.

  Know when it's time to get help. Reach out, talking helps.


Working in the military presents uniques challenges.  The decision to serve in the armed forces is often prompted by an idealized vision of our mission.  The realities of military life are stressful. Family relationships may takes the brunt of multiple extended deployments, uncertain end dates, and unexpected calls to activate.  Sometimes there is little choice about MOS or location. Today, these deployments are 

as likely to be on American soil as overseas.  

The military has traditionally focused on warrior mental readiness however when it comes time to transition back to civilian life additional support may be needed.  Some clients prefer a private therapist with increased protection of confidentiality rather than seeing a therapist 

provided by the military.


Dispatchers are the forgotten first responders. Critical to making sure that emergency responses are coordinated, they are the first contact that the public has when they need help.  The stress of being emotionally involved with departments that are 'on the street' can weigh heavily on dispatchers over time.  In addition once ems, fire, or police arrive on scene, dispatch is disconnected and often has no idea how the call may play out. The imagination may fill in the blanks and these imagined scenes can be worse than being there.

Compassion fatigue, poor self care and irritability can result.Those that work in communications also need to be vigilant about asking for help before personal and home life are effected. 

Nurses and Physicians

Working in the medical field presents wonderful challenges and endless learning opportunities. If you've logged some milage in the medical system or went in envisioning idealized care settings, the realities of the medical system can be disappointing.  Wanting to take time to 'care' for patients is in competition with insurance and administration demands. This can erode satisfaction in our work.  Self care frequently is neglected because of long hours and seemingly endless increases in the demand to 'do more with less'.  Care givers need care too.  A psychologist can help you design a plan that preserves your energy for a demanding career and a satisfying life.