“Stress Happens!” is the brainchild of Crew Health partners Liz Baugh of Red Square Medical and Karen Passman of Impact Crew. The training workshop, developed in 2019 is a response to the increasing awareness of issues affecting crew mental wellbeing whilst onboard.
The UK Club Crew Health team were recently asked to source support for seafarers
who had sadly witnessed the unexpected death of a fellow crewmember. Months
later, despite initial counselling, the crew was still experiencing flashbacks and
anxiety. They were suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
The Club reports a case of a crew member recently repatriated following a period of insomnia and heart palpitations.
The Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) recognised the negative effect that bullying and harassment can have on seafarer health and wellbeing, and have voted to bring these serious issues under Regulation 4.3 – the health and safety protection and accident protection code.
Seafarers, who are often exposed to adverse working conditions with multiple stressors, are a population at acute risk of panic attacks.
Earlier this year the Club supported the production of the Human Rights at Sea mental health welfare leaflet "Remaining Resilient after Traumatic Events"
Mental health affects crew of all ages, nationalities and ranks. A recent analysis of crew mental health revealed anxiety, social isolation, pressure of work and disturbed sleep can affect crew, all of which can negatively influence their mental health.