2019 SNTI Program Details

Breakout Content Strands

Strand A: Strength Based Approaches
Strand B: Psychiatry & Integrated Health
Strand C: START Best Practices & New Strategies
Strand D: Policy, Practices & Community Inclusion
Strand E: Crisis Response

Monday, May 6

9:45 - 10:45 am | Keynote

Passion and Power of Positive Practices: Well-Being at Work 
Dan Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP, Core Faculty, Spirituality Mind Body Institute, Teachers College, Columbia University, Assistant Instructor, Masters of Applied Positive Psychology Program, University of Pennsylvania, Director, New York Certificate of Applied Positive Psychology, Open Center

Evidence-informed practices to enhance well-being have powerfully influenced the way in which clinical services are delivered in the past decade. Central to this process is the well-being of the clinical and support staff.  This presentation will review some of the latest research on best practices in delivering services for people with IDD drawing from the PERMA model of well-being, positive psychopathology, and the dualistic model of passion. APA CE Credit offered: 1.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Identify and describe the most recent developments on the five areas of the PERMA model as proposed by Seligman Positive emotions, Engagement, Relationship, Meaning, and Achievement.
  • Explain positive psychopathology as it relates to people with IDD.
  • Explain the dualistic model of passion and identify strategies for creating ongoing support for staff well-being by promoting harmonious passion.

11:00 am - 12:30 pm | Panel

Why Don’t We Practice What We Preach? The Crisis of Polypharmacy
Laurie Charlot, PhD, Co-Chair, START Research Committee; Jarrett Barnhill, MD, DFAPA, FAACAP, Medical Director, Center for START Services; Jennifer McLaren, MD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth; Leslie Smith, MD, Psychiatrist, START Network Partner, Executive Director, GAIN Inc. (an Assertive Community Treatment Program)

The panel will be reviewing several areas critical to an understanding of the current crisis in our field related to the routine use of psychotropic polypharmacy. The use of multiple psychotropics is often aimed at controlling unwanted behavior of individuals with IDD, and frequently is the main intervention applied to control aggression. Four speakers will touch on the following topics, but then we ask for your input and participation as we seek remedies to this challenge: Why is it so hard to eliminate ineffective medications? What in the world is this thing we call “irritability?” (Since we so often use medication to treat it.) Does diagnostic confusion add to this problem? What can we do to reverse these worrisome trends? If we know what best practices should be (a bio-psycho-social approach) in the care of people with IDD and behavioral and mental health conditions, why don’t we practice what we preach? Dartmouth-Hitchcock designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Explain the scope of the crisis of psychotropic polypharmacy in the field of IDD

  • Identify at least two reasons that diagnostic confusion adds to the practice of polypharmacy and their potential consequences

  • State at least 2 steps START teams can take to promote reduced polypharmacy practices.

  • Describe how the term ”irritability” is applied in the field of IDD and co-occurring behavioral and mental health conditions

1:30 - 3:00 pm | Breakout Session 1

Strand A | “You are important to me” Help Your DSPs Be the Best They Can Be
Kelly Hartman, MA, President & CEO at Insights Consulting; Mary Ciccarelli, MD, Professor of Clinical Medicine and Pediatrics at Indiana University School of Medicine, Director of the Center for Youth and Adults with Conditions of Childhood; John Dickerson, Founder and CEO, Quillo

Recent research has explored the impact of staff training on outcomes for individuals who experience mental health needs and IDD as well as the factors related to DSP job satisfaction and burnout. Yet our understanding of persons with intellectual disabilities doesn’t have to be highly scientific or complex. Let’s make it simple.  Let’s create a concrete and small step process to help your direct service providers be better at their work. Use this framework. Walk just a minute in my shoes. How does my brain work? What makes sense to me? What am I trying to tell you with words and actions? What do I feel and understand about my body? About you? About my world? If we create opportunities for this basic understanding of the persons we serve, our success will be notable. Learn from three experienced leaders with over 70 combined years of service for persons with intellectual disability in behavioral health, healthcare and advocacy. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this program, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the specific training needs of Managers and DSPs that will enhance the quality of supports provided to individuals with IDD and co-occurring mental health needs                                                    
  • Discuss strategies for identifying emerging behavioral health symptoms amongst individuals with IDD
  • Discuss emerging health and wellness needs amongst individuals with IDD
  • Identify at least three key components of establishing a culture of workforce well being

Strand B | Diagnostic Overshadowing of Anxiety in Individuals with Intellectual Disability
Jennifer McLaren, MD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth

Anxiety in individuals with intellectual disability is highly prevalent. However, anxiety is underdiagnosed, misdiagnosed, unrecognized, and undertreated. In this presentation the prevalence, diagnostic issues, predisposing factors, and comorbidity of anxiety disorders in individuals with intellectual disability will be reviewed.  The unique presentation of anxiety disorders in individuals with intellectual disability will be discussed.  Lastly, treatment options for anxiety disorders will be reviewed. Dartmouth-Hitchcock designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the prevalence, diagnostic issues, predisposing factors, and comorbidity of anxiety disorders in individuals with intellectual disability

  • Describe at least three (3) ways in which anxiety disorders may present in individuals with intellectual disability

  • Discuss treatment options for anxiety disorders in individuals with intellectual disability

Strand C | Doing the Old Soft Shoe: Soft Skills and Their Impact on Systems Change
Ginny Reding, LPC, LMFT, Certified START Coordinator, START Network Partner; Cheryl Karran, MSW, LMSW, Director, NY START Region 4 Triborough; Val Tetreault, MAPP, Director, NH START; Andrea Caoili, MSW, LCSW, Director of Quality Assurance, Center for START Services

Based on a “systems change” framework, START teams are trained in systemic consultation to enhance service outcomes by training and influencing the way the systems work together to support people with IDD and behavioral health challenges. This model is a consistent way of operating and thinking about individuals within the context of their system of support and sees the system as a living, open, interdependent unit that is undergoing constant transformation. The main goal of intervention is to restructure the system and its transactional rules, which enables the system to improve its ability to cope with stress and conflict. This presentation will focus on teaching strategies and specific systemic interventions to improve the overall mental wellness and quality of life of the individual served and improve communication and collaboration among the individual’s system of support. Practical strategies to apply systemic interventions across varying disciplines and roles within the system will be discussed. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Identify and describe systemic interventions that can be applied when working with individuals with IDD and behavioral health challenges

  • Identify practical application of these systemic interventions

  • Cleary articulate how these interventions can be used in their specific discipline and roles in the system

Strand D | Using Film in Systems Change: Creating the START Documentary
Karen Weigle, PhD, Associate Director, Center for START Services; Dan Habib, Project Director and Filmmaker; Sharon Cyrus-Savary, LMHC, Director, NY START Region 4 Richmond-Kings; Deandra Brent, MSW, START Coordinator, NY START Region 4 Richmond-Kings; Linda Kurland, MA, CCC-SLP, Program Director, TX START Tarrant County; and David Gunter, Resource Center Director, TX START Tarrant County

In this session, you will view a rough cut of the new film about START. The full film will be made up of at least three chapters of 15-20 minutes each, capturing the unique and ground-breaking practices and philosophies of the START model. The impact of START on all our lives will be viewed through the perspectives of START clients, family members, related service providers, local START staff and national START leaders. Members of START teams involved in the production of the film will discuss the process and impact of film-making on their teams and those supported. This film is produced by award-winning filmmaker Dan Habib whose most recent film, Intelligent Lives, seeks to “transform the label of intellectual disability from a life sentence of isolation into a life of possibility for the most systematically segregated people in America.” Dan Habib and the Center for START Services are based out of the University of New Hampshire’s Institute on Disability UCED. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe how film and story-telling informs practice and policy
  • Discuss how the START model has impacted a variety of participants, from clients and their families, to services systems and START team members
  • Explain how positive approaches are used to enhance PERMA for both individuals and systems

Strand E | Best Practices in START Crisis Intervention:  A Bio-Psycho-Social Approach
Anne LaForce, MA, LPA, Project Facilitator, Center for START Services

It is estimated that one-third of all individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities has a mental health and/or behavioral health problem requiring specialized support services.  For individuals with co-occurring diagnoses, crisis situations can be especially complex due to the multiple factors that may lead to crisis.  This presentation outlines START crisis intervention approaches that utilize a solution-focused approach through positive psychology strategies and recognition of biopsychosocial factors that may contribute to difficulties for an individual and their support system. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the role of START coordination when responding to crisis situations
  • Identify Biopsychosocial vulnerabilities that contribute to crisis for individuals with co-occurring diagnoses
  • Describe how to use this information when triaging a crisis situation and developing disposition strategies

3:15 - 4:45 pm | Breakout Session 2

Strand A | PERMA in START Practices
Jill Hinton, PhD, Clinical Director, Center for START Services; Karen Weigle, PhD, Associate Director, Center for START Services; Dan Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP, Core Faculty, Spirituality Mind Body Institute, Teachers College, Columbia University, Assistant Instructor, Masters of Applied Positive Psychology Program, University of Pennsylvania, Director, New York Certificate of Applied Positive Psychology, Open Center; Kelly Fletcher, Lead In-Home Therapeutic Coach, NY START Region 4 Richmond-Kings; Trisha Flynn, BS, Therapeutic Coach, NY START Region 4 Richmond-Kings

This session will first describe the PERMA Model, developed by Martin Seligman, which includes five core elements of psychological well-being that help people reach a life of fulfillment and meaning: Positive Emotion, Engagement, Relationships, Meaning, and Achievement. The desire for a fulfilled life is shared by ALL, including people with IDD and co-occurring mental health needs. The START model shares a focus on strengths and positive psychology, and the use of PERMA concepts within the START model will be highlighted. Specific examples of how START programs have put PERMA concepts into practice will be shared. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the core elements of PERMA and how identifying strengths in people with IDD is integral to achieving PERMA
  • Explain how the core elements of PERMA meld with the START model’s philosophies, values, tools, and approaches
  • Identify practical applications of the concepts of PERMA into START practices and/or other community services and supports

Strand B | Supporting Individuals with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD)
David Deere, MSW, LCSW, Co-Director, Partners for Inclusive Communities

Recent studies that were funded by National Institutes of Health found that as many as 1 in 20 first graders had an FASD, yet less than one percent were diagnosed.  This lifelong condition can cause an array of neurobehavioral characteristics that put individuals at risk for being a victim of crime or committing a crime and becoming incarcerated.  Persons with FASD are over represented in child welfare, are at risk of expulsion from school, and experience mental illness at elevated rates.  Participants in this presentation will learn to recognize potential cases of FASD and will gain skills needed to effectively support individuals with the condition. Dartmouth-Hitchcock designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™.  APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Identify potential cases of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) and how this condition may be impacting the person’s life

  • Describe at least two (2) effective interventions based on current research that promote positive educational and service outcomes for individuals with FAS

  • Identify at least two (2) resources to support continued education on FASD

Strand C | START Coordinator Certification Review: What You Need to Know
Alyce Benson, LCSW, Associate Project Facilitator, Center for START Services; Mike Marzo, MA, LMFT, Associate Director, NY START Region 5 Long Island; Bryan Alava, MA, Team Lead, NY START Region 4 Tri-Borough; Maggie Robbins, MA, LCAT, RDT, Clinical Director, NCSTART Central

The coordinator certification process is both exciting and rigorous, requiring a great deal of focus and effort. This presentation will allow those going through the process of certification and those guiding others to receive tips and helpful hints. Participants will explore how to clinically conceptualize their work through the use of didactic and experiential engagement. This presentation will outline the logistics of preparing for certification review as well as identifying ways to present with a person-centered, strengths-based lens that focuses on the important and unique work of the START coordinator. Tools that can aide in the planning process will also be shared. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Apply best practices in clinical presentations

  • Describe at least three (3) tips and helpful hints regarding case selection, presentation format and development, timelines for preparatory activities and effective utilization of supervision

  • Identify a hypothesis within the case presented and clearly articulate how the case demonstrates an understanding of the START model

  • Clearly identify ways to include systemic consultation (including rapport building) and linkages utilized during START involvement within the coordinator certification presentation

Strand D | Needs & Experiences of Young Adults with IDD Using Mental Health Services: Recommendations for Practice & Research
Jessica Kramer, PhD, Associate Professor, University of Florida; Sara Luterman, MFA, Autism Consultant, Microsoft, Founder, NOS Magazine; Destiny Watkins, Self-Advocate, Advisory Board Member, IDD-MH Research Partnership 

The Intellectual and Developmental Disability Mental Health (IDD-MH) Research Partnership was created to learn more about the experiences and needs of young adults with IDD-MH while accessing and using mental health services. Our national partnership is comprised of six young adults, five professionals, Boston University, Self Advocates Becoming Empowered, and The Arc of the United States. Working together, we designed and conducted a national web survey (n= 76) and national story telling sessions (n = 15), which resulted in eight priority topic areas that together highlight the importance of choice, control, respect, and community-based supports. Using what we learned in addition to already existing research (Werner & Stawski, 2012; Spassiani, Abou Chacra, & Lunsky, 2017; Lunsky & Balough, 2010), we generated recommendations to advance research and practice in areas important to young adults with IDD-MH. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe why it’s important to understand the needs and experiences of young adults with IDD-MH while accessing and using mental health services

  • Define the eight topic areas that impact the experiences of young adults with IDD-MH while using mental health services

  • Articulate how practice, service systems, and research can be improved to better need the needs of young adults with IDD-MH

Strand E | Screening for Psychiatric Hospital Admissions
Laurie Charlot, PhD, Co-Chair, START Research Committee

In this session, the key steps and components of a psychiatric hospital admissions screening will be presented. Areas for consideration include whether an individual could receive the care he or she needs in a less restrictive setting, and the importance of having clear goals and expectations about inpatient treatment when it may be the right step. What can reasonably be expected from an inpatient admission will be discussed to help referring parties frame specific goals. What a community team can do to maximize benefit from a hospital stay will be explored, including the role START team members can play.  Case examples will be used to illustrate the process. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe what are reasonable expectations for inpatient psychiatric treatment during a short inpatient stay
  • Describe the role of a START coordinator in helping a person gain maximum benefit from inpatient psychiatric care
  • Describe two rationales for psychiatric inpatient treatment of a person with IDD

Tuesday, May 7

9:30 - 10:45 am | Research Panel

Strength in Numbers: START Research Initiatives
Joan Beasley, PhD, Director, Center for START Services, Research Associate Professor, University of New Hampshire; Andrea Caoili, LCSW, Director of Quality Assurance, Center for START Services, Adjunct Professor, University of New Hampshire; Ann Klein, MA, SIRS Manager, Center for START Services; Luke Kalb, PhD, Assistant Professor, Kennedy Krieger Institute; Calliope Holingue, MPH, Post-Doctoral Student, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health; Elizabeth Wise, MD, Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Johns Hopkins; Jennifer McLaren, MD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth

The use of the START Information Reporting System (SIRS), a national database, has allowed for ongoing analysis of clinical and service trends for individuals enrolled in START services across the country. This presentation will include a description of the SIRS database, a review of research and development in the work of START and its national network. A summary of findings over the last year will be provided. The information provided within this presentation is intended for any professional working in the MH/IDD field. Dartmouth-Hitchcock designates this live activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™. APA CE Credits offered: 1.25.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Explain the importance and use of data reporting and analysis in the field of MH/IDD
  • Discuss ways data analysis can be used to design, implement and evaluate best practices
  • Demonstrate how the current research related to the START model applies to the field of IDD and co-occurring behavioral and mental health conditions

11:00 am - 12:30 pm | Breakout Session 3

Strand A | Wrong To Strong:  The Power of Positive Psychology in Clinical Interventions
Dan Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP, Core Faculty, Spirituality Mind Body Institute, Teachers College, Columbia University, Assistant Instructor, Masters of Applied Positive Psychology Program, University of Pennsylvania, Director, New York Certificate of Applied Positive Psychology, Open Center; Andrea Szucs, LCSW, RDT,  Lecturer in Social Work/Field Instructor, Columbia University School of Social Work, AHRC; and the BHMA Troupe

Specific evidence-based positive interventions drawn from positive psychology and positive psychotherapy have been incorporated into the field of intellectual disabilities with promising results. Techniques for clinical and direct service staff, as well as modifications used in Interactive-Behavioral Therapy and ACTing cure group models will be demonstrated and shown as part of this presentation. Included will be a demonstration of the use of video feedback in delivery of these services. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the positive interventions used in positive psychology and positive psychotherapy and how they are employed within the Interactive Behavioral Therapy (IBT) model and the ACTing cure: psychodrama and dramatherapy approaches to treatment respectively
  • Identify the four stages of the IBT model and the ACTing cure and describe what takes place in each stage and how this differs when using drama therapy, and video feedback
  • Demonstrate action methods from psychodrama and drama therapy designed to facilitate positive psychotherapy as modified for people with IDD

Strand B | Emotional Regulation and Common Medical Conditions
Jarrett Barnhill, MD, Medical Director, Center for START Services; Cathy Kluttz-Hile, MA, BSN, CDDN, Nurse Consultant, NC START Central Team

Irritability is a complex pattern of negative emotional states in response to stress/trauma, environmental and interpersonal frustrations. The frequency and intensity of irritability follows a complex developmental trajectory linked to brain development and maturation, temperament, attachment, and emerging adaptive skill levels such as affect regulation, impulse control, and behavioral flexibility. In many clinical situations, there are co-occurring medical, neurological and other neuropsychiatric disorders. This presentation focuses on linking these biopsychosocial domains with data-driven, treatment decision-making. Dartmouth-Hitchcock designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the effects of medical and neurological disorders on affect regulation

  • Discuss the different subsets of irritability and the ways these differences affect treatment planning

  • Discuss assessment and treatment strategies for affect dysregulation

Strand C | START Demonstration Projects: From Grass Roots to Full Bloom
Karen Weigle, PhD, Associate Director, Center for START Services; Jill Hinton, PhD, Clinical Director, Center for START Services; Meg DePasquale, DSW, Director of Clinical Services, Maryland Department of Health, Developmental Disabilities Administration; Felicia Bates, MPH, Clinical Director, I-START; Valarie Tetreault, MAPP, Director, NH START

This panel discussion will provide an overview on the various approaches used when developing START programs- from grass-roots efforts to full model implementation. Representatives from three teams around the nation will present their strategies for starting teams and how they’ve gained traction over time. Each team had a similar vision for their regions but took unique paths to successfully implement their programs. 

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Identify at least two (2) strategies for gaining stakeholder interest in beginning an innovative practice
  • List at least three (3) means of successfully funding pilot projects
  • Describe how data collection and reporting informed the growth and sustainability of START teams

Strand D | The Use of START Data to Inform Policy and Practices
Ann Klein, MA, SIRS Manager, The Center for START Service; Angie Francis, Statewide Coordinator, NY START; and Luke Reynard, MBA, Chief of Operations, Disability Services, MHMR Tarrant County

Current research suggests that the use of data in decision-making increases performance at a practice level and that evidence-informed data is used by policy-makers and funders to inform policy and practice decisions.  All START programs are linked and evaluated through ongoing data collection via the START Information Reporting System (SIRS).  Data collected in SIRS is gathered by START coordinators in accordance with START guidelines and policies and is closely monitored for accuracy.  This presentation will look at how the data collected across all START programs in SIRS is being used to drive practice at the program level and inform policy at the system/state level and how these work together to contribute to the broader knowledge base about best practices for supporting individuals with IDD and mental health needs. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe how data-driven decision making is used at a micro (program) and macro (system/state) level to inform practice

  • Identify the SIRS data elements that are used to inform policy at the system/state level

  • List at least two (2) opportunities to use SIRS data to drive best practice in their own systems

Strand E | START Disaster Preparedness: Partnering to Prevent
Steve Tuzo, Resource Center Director, NC START East; Laura Shea, MA, Resource Center Director, NC START West; Erica  Liles, MSW, LCSWA, Resource Center Director, NC START Central 

As part of the crisis continuum, it is key for all providers working with individuals with IDD and co-occurring mental health conditions to be “linked in” with emergency and disaster readiness supports. This presentation will provide a multi-faceted overview of what to do, how to stay connected, and how to support individuals with IDD/MH issues before, during and after a disaster. Practical strategies will be discussed and provided to participants. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Identify entities within their local communities that can be used as resources in supporting individuals with IDD/MH issues during major disasters/emergency events

  • Clearly outline strategies that can be used in preparation for a major disaster/emergency event

  • Demonstrate how to support individuals with IDD/MH issues, their families and support teams following a major disaster/emergency event using evidence-based best practice guidelines

2:15 - 3:45 pm | Breakout 4

Strand A | Wellness: A Natural Approach
Dan Baker, PhD, NADD-CC, Positive Support Compliance Specialist, Minnesota Department of Human Services ; Destiny Watkins, Self-Advocate

Mental wellness is a concept which we all understand, but we tend to forget this important dimension in helping support people.  We will review concepts in mental wellness using an evidence-based framework from Joanne Cannon’s pioneering research (2005), which helped introduce the term ‘wellness’ into our daily vernacular. This presentation will blend research with lived experience, making connections to specific interventions and positive, natural supports. Examples, exercises, and case studies are included in this interactive session. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the importance of mental wellness for persons with Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities (IDD) and mental health needs (MH/IDD)

  • Utilize evidence-based practices to improve mental wellness for individuals with MH/IDD

  • Create a wellness plan that applies evidence-based and non-traditional practices to promote mental wellness

Strand B | The Gastrointestinal Tract/Brain Connection
Leslie Smith, MD, Psychiatrist, START Network Partner, Executive Director, GAIN Inc. (an Assertive Community Treatment Program); Felicia Bates, MPH, Clinical Director, Iowa START; Calliope Holingue, MPH, Post-Doctoral Student, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

This presentation provides a multidisciplinary perspective on the relationship between the gastrointestinal tract and brain. Participants will be provided with an in-depth exploration of the “brain in your gut” which includes an overview of neuroanatomy, pain pathways from the brain to the gut, origin of serotonin production, and the role of the intestine in development of the immune and endocrine systems. The second portion of the presentation will review current research focused on the connection between autism and the gastrointestinal system. The final portion of the presentation will provide a case example that demonstrates the identification of underlying GI issues that were contributing to baseline exaggeration for an individual referred to the Iowa START program. Dartmouth-Hitchcock designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the intimate relationship between the brain and the gut
  • Name and describe at least two (2) studies that support the brain/gut relationship
  • Describe the relationship between gut microbiota and disease
  • Discuss the current research aimed at establishing a connection between gut microbial profiles and challenging behavior

Strand C | START Resource Centers-Highlighting Best Practices
Robert Scholz, MS, LMHC, Director of Resource Center Services, Center for START Services; Magney Hector-Williams, MSW, Resource Center Director, NY START Region 4 Richmond-Kings; Erica Liles, Resource Center Director, NC START Central; Shaniqua Williams, BSW, Lead Resource Center Counselor, NC START Central

Recent research has confirmed the therapeutic benefits of building on the character strengths of individuals with IDD and mental health needs. This presentation will build upon this evidence base by highlighting best practices from three START Resource Centers across the START network. Each best practice example promotes positive, strengths-based approaches which incorporate elements of PERMA (Positive Emotion-Engagement-Relationships-Meaning-Accomplishments) into their design and implementation. These best practices are generalizable across environments and are designed to be implemented by any MH/IDD professional. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe effective strength-spotting tools and strategies to use in a therapeutic milieu that reinforce elements of PERMA

  • List data collection tools that assist Resource Center Counselors to organize and facilitate daily therapeutic programming and incorporate PERMA into the therapeutic day

  • Develop a strengths-based health and wellness program that encourages healthy cooking and eating through active guest participation and individual empowerment

Strand D | The START Research Committee: Who we are, what we are doing, and how to get involved
Luther G. Kalb, PhD, Co-Chair, START Research Committee, Assistant Professor, CARD and Department of Neuropsychology, Kennedy Krieger Institute; Laurie Charlot, PhD, Co-Chair, START Research Committee; Karen Weigle, PhD, Associate Director, Center for START Services; Jill Hinton, PhD, Clinical Director, Center for START Services; Denise Bronzino, PhD, Clinical Director, NY START Region 5 Long Island; Amy Anneling, PhD, Clinical Director, NY START Region 3; Alyse Scura, MA, LMHC, Clinical Director, NY START Region 5 Long Island

The START Research Committee’s mission is to advance research efforts that seek to improve the lives of individuals with IDD and behavioral health needs and their families. The START Research Committee oversees and sponsors research activities across the national START network. This panel presentation will orient attendees to the mission of the START research group, provide an update on current national research initiatives, and present outcomes related to several different projects. At the end of each presentation, time will be allotted for committee members to answer audience questions about the nature of the work presented. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the START Research Committee’s mission, research interests and application process
  • Report on the Research Committee’s sponsored initiatives and associated outcomes
  • Explain how current research can be applied to the field of IDD and co-occurring behavioral health needs

Strand E | START and CIT: Creating Connections and Solutions
David O'Neal, MS, LMHC, Project Facilitator, Center for START Services

Crisis Intervention Teams (CIT) serve as a model of collaboration between law enforcement and mental health providers that provides police officers with knowledge and skills related to crisis de-escalation. The broader goal of CIT is focused on systems change so that crisis care is more accessible within the community.  This presentation will outline CIT model best practices found within peer-reviewed literature regarding how mental health and IDD professionals can strengthen services and effectively collaborate with CIT first responders, especially related to individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities at the primary, secondary, and tertiary levels. APA CE Credits offered: 1.5.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Identify areas of primary intervention training and linkages that  benefit first responders when supporting individuals with MH/IDD during emergencies

  • Identify when and how to involve first responders during secondary interventions

  • At the emergency/tertiary care level, identify best practices for collaboration that will ensure positive outcomes and follow-up 

Wednesday, May 8

9:00 - 10:15 am | Keynote

Inclusion and Belonging: Implications for Individuals with IDD-MH
Tawara Goode, MA, Director, Georgetown University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities & National Center for Cultural Competence; Andy Arias, ADA and SME Policy Advisor; Liz Weintraub, Senior Advocacy Specialist, AUCD;  Marya Laviste, Certified START Coordinator, Program Coordinator, Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Services, Sound Mental Health

This keynote panel will explore the meaning of inclusion from diverse perspectives and in diverse cultural contexts. It will explore exclusion and how it manifests within the social fabric of our communities and the nation. This keynote will offer an authentic dialogue about how the START network conceptualizes and practices inclusion and hear from people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (and their families) about their lived experiences of inclusion vs. belonging. APA CE Credits offered: 1.25.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Analyze at least three (3) conceptualizations of inclusion and how they manifest within START
  • Compare the concepts of multiple cultural identities and intersectionality and discuss their implications for the populations served by START
  • Differentiate inclusion from belonging
  • Identify the cultural connotations of inclusion and belonging from the perspective of those with lived experiences

10:30 - 11:45 am | Panel

Inclusive Education Panel
Diane Jacobstein, PhD, Clinical Psychologist/ Adjunct Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Georgetown University Center for Child and Human Development-UCEDD (Moderator); Liz Weintraub, Senior Advocacy Specialist, AUCD; Sue Swenson, MA, President, Inclusion International; Dan Baker, PhD, NADD-CC, Positive Support Compliance Specialist, MN Department of Human Services 

This panel will explore best practices, research, and families’ rights in inclusive education.  One panelist, Liz Weintraub, will relate personal experiences of both successful inclusion and exclusion within “inclusive” settings, illustrating values that go beyond the usual attention to class grouping.  The next panelist, Sue Swenson, will bring a dual focus, as the mother of a son with profound disabilities who was educated in inclusive settings, and as a federal policy maker, and national and international disability advocate. Relevant federal laws and policies will be reviewed. Since the ultimate outcome of educational inclusion is inclusion in the community as an adult, transition to work is an important process of preparing youth with disabilities to have good, included lives as adults.  Another panelist, Dr. Dan Baker, will describe best practices in transition and Community-Based Instruction (CBI), and offer suggestions on how to best advocate for an effective transition process. Finally, the panel moderator, Dr. Diane Jacobstein, will summarize evidence on benefits of inclusive education in the context of current data from START participants.  APA CE Credits offered: 1.25.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

List and describe federal laws and policies that promote inclusive educational settings

  • List and describe federal laws and policies that promote inclusive educational settings

  • Describe the key attributes of inclusive education

  • Discuss benefits of inclusive classroom placement for children with intellectual and developmental disabilities and behavioral health needs

  • Describe best practices in supported transition to the world of work as a vital step in community inclusion

  • Identify resources to support students in inclusive classrooms