Mental health

Psychological debriefing in people exposed to a recent traumatic event

Question 5: Is psychological debriefing better (more effective than/as safe as) than no intervention in people exposed to a recent traumatic event?

  • Population: adults exposed to a traumatic event in previous 2 weeks
  • Interventions: single session psychological debriefing
  • Comparison: no intervention
  • Outcomes:
    • post-traumatic stress, anxiety and depression symptom severity (1-3 months after intervention and at follow up [+ 6 months])
    • adverse effects.


Psychological debriefing should not be used for people exposed recently to a traumatic event as an intervention to reduce the risk of posttraumatic stress, anxiety or depressive symptoms.
Strength of recommendation: STRONG

Evidence profile