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Lake Regional Hosts Youth, Adult Mental Health First Aid Trainings

Thursday, January 6, 2022

Just as CPR helps you assist an individual having a heart attack, Mental Health First Aid helps you assist someone experiencing a mental health crisis.

This spring, Lake Regional will host multiple free virtual Mental Health First Aid courses. Participants will learn how to recognize signs of substance abuse and mental illness, including anxiety, depression and disorders involving psychosis. Participants also will learn how to offer and provide initial help, and how to guide a person toward appropriate care.

There are two opportunities to take Youth Mental Health First Aid virtually: 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 9, or 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 13. The youth course is for parents, family members, caregivers, teachers, school staff, health and human services workers, and other caring citizens. Participants must be at least 18 years old.

There are also two opportunities to take Adult Mental Health First Aid virtually: 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 9, or 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 11. The adult course is for employers, police officers, health care workers, first responders, faith leaders and other caring citizens. Participants must be at least 18 years old.

Each course is free. Participants must register two weeks in advance and complete two hours of self-paced training at least three days prior to the course date.

Register at to receive the online links. For more information, call Lake Regional Public Relations at 573.348.8222 or email

Lake Regional is offering these classes in response to community feedback collected for the 2021 Community Health Needs Assessment. This assessment is completed every three years and covers Camden, Laclede, Miller and Morgan counties. The top community health priorities identified in 2021 were mental health, access to health care, and a lack of insurance or ability to pay. Learn more about the assessment and see the full implementation plan at

Rusty Spieler, M.D., was a physician you wanted on call if an emergency took you to the hospital. Dr. Spieler was amazing at practicing love and compassion towards others. However, he was not very good at practicing loving-kindness towards himself. On July 8, 2020, all of a sudden, he was gone. He died from complications of his long struggle with mental health. Dr. Spieler’s family has expressed the need to talk openly about mental health, as easily as one would talk about arthritis or diabetes, to extinguish the shame of asking for help. Therefore, in memory of Dr. Rusty Spieler, we present Mental Health First Aid.