START Virtual Orientation - August Series

Video presentation: Overview of the START model


Continuing Education

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Wednesday August 5, 2020 | Foundations of START

 

Program Schedule

*Please take the VIA Character Survey before today's program begins (free survey, requires account registration)

Time Topic
1:00-2:15pm ET/10:00-11:15am PT Keynote: Positive Psychology
2:15-3:00pm ET/11:15am-12:00pm PT START Foundations Part I
30 min break  
3:30-4:30pm ET/12:30-1:30pm PT START Foundations Part II
4:30-5:00pm ET/1:30-2:00pm PT Discussion & Wrapup

 

 

 

 

 

Keynote: Positive Psychology
Dan Tomasulo, Ph.D., MFA, MAPP, Positive Psychology Expert

This presentation provides an introduction to the history of positive psychology, which underlies the philosophy of START. While we need to understand the challenges our clients experience, we design our interventions and supports, as well as our work with systems, based on the persons’ strengths, interests, and skills. Positive psychology helps us “build-what’s-strong” to supplement the traditional “fix-what’s wrong” approach. This helps us more seriously consider people’s intact faculties, ambitions, positive life experiences, and strengths of character, and how those buffer against disorder to help the person withstand and overcome challenges.

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe the influence of positive psychology through the lens of Martin Seligman’s contribution
  • Identify the five pillars of positive psychology highlighted in the acronym PERMA
  • Describe positive outcomes associated with utilizing positive psychology in practice
  • Understand how you can use VIA Character Strengths to engage with individuals and systems to improve outcomes

Foundations of START
Joan B. Beasley, PhD, Director, Center for START Services

This training provides a comprehensive overview of the START model, including its history, mission and values, approaches, and current implementation across the United States.

Learning Objectives

  • Explain why the START model was developed and its effectiveness for individuals with IDD/MH and their systems of support
  • Describe the role of the Center for START Services at UNH/IOD UCED
  • Summarize START’s guiding principles and how they guide START model implementation

About Today's Presenters

Joan B. Beasley, PhD, UNH Research Associate Professor and Director of the Center for START Services at the UNH Institute on Disability. Dr. Beasley holds a Ph.D. in Social Policy from the Heller School at Brandeis University, and a Master’s degree in Community Mental Health Counseling from Northeastern University. Dr. Beasley has authored and co-authored numerous publications in the field of MHIDD, and provides training in the US, Canada and Europe. She serves as co-chair of the Mental Health Special Interest Group of AUCD.

Dr. Beasley is the author and co-founder of the START program, first implemented in 1988, and has worked to promote the development of effective services for people with disabilities and their families for more than 35 years. START was cited as a model program in the 2002 US Surgeon General’s Report on mental health disparities for persons with intellectual/developmental disabilities and in 2016 the model was identified as best practice by the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine.

Dan Tomasulo, Ph.D., MFA, MAPP, was recently appointed incoming Academic Director, Spirituality Mind Body (SMB) MA Degree Program and core faculty member, full-time lecturer in the Department of Clinical Psychology at Teachers College, Columbia University. The Spirituality Mind Body (SMB), Master of Arts Degree Program at Teachers College, Columbia University is the first Ivy League graduate program dedicated to merging spirituality and evidence-based research within the context of clinical psychology. Dr. Tomasulo’s scholarly interests center on human development, intellectual and psychiatric disabilities—with a current emphasis on the transformational properties of learned hopefulness.

His clinical orientation is informed by extensive post-doctoral training in psychodrama with a current focus on the application of psychodramatic methods to the development of positive emotions. Most recently he has been honored by the International Positive Psychology Association’s clinical division for his work on the Virtual Gratitude Visit (VGV) and the use of embodied cognition in the development of self-compassion. His award-winning memoir American Snake Pit: Hope, Grit, and Resilience in the Wake of Willowbrook, was released in 2018 and tells of the social injustice behind America’s most notorious asylum, Willowbrook. The book focuses on the hope emerging from the first experimental group home to integrate Willowbrook residents successfully into the community. His screenplay based on the book has won 35 international film festivals since its release.

His most recent book, Learned Hopefulness, The Power of Positivity To Overcome Depression, is hailed as “…the perfect recipe for fulfillment, joy, peace, and expansion of awareness,” by Deepak Chopra, MD: Author of Metahuman: Unleashing Your Infinite Potential. Martin Seligman, Ph.D., author of Flourish, adds: “This is the best go-to book on how to use hope to relieve your depression.”


Thursday August 6, 2020 | The Biopsychosocial Approach and Application to START Practices

Program Schedule

Time Topic
1:00-1:30pm ET/10:00-10:30am PT Strength Spotting Exercise
1:30-2:15pm ET/10:30-11:15am PT Biopsychosocial Overview: Part I
2:15-3:00pm ET/11:15am-12:00pm PT Breakout groups
30 min break  
3:30-4:15pm ET/12:30-1:15pm PT Biopsychosocial Overview: Part II
4:15-5:00pm ET/1:15-2:00pm PT Breakout Groups & Wrapup

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Biopsychosocial Approach and Application to START Practices
Jill Hinton, PhD, Karen Weigle, PhD, and Jennifer McLaren, MD

A biopsychosocial formulation of each person we serve is a core principle of the START model. This presentation will outline the importance of considering biopsychosocial vulnerabilities in understanding a person and designing the most effective interventions and supports. The most common vulnerabilities in each category and how they interact and impact one another will be described.  Participants will have opportunities to apply these principles in a case discussion in small groups.

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will describe the relevance of the biopsychosocial approach.
  • Participants will list some of the most common biopsychosocial vulnerabilities related to IDD/MH.
  • Participants will apply these principles in case discussion.

About Today's Presenters

Jill Hinton, PhD, Clinical Director, Center for START Services, is a Clinical Psychologist with over 30 years of experience working with people with intellectual disabilities, autism spectrum disorders, and mental illness. As the Clinical Director of The Center for START Services, Dr. Hinton provides technical assistance, consultation, and training to START teams across the country and facilitates a monthly practice group for START program clinical directors. She currently serves as Project Manager for START programs in California, New York and Maryland. During her career, she has worked with both the Autism Society of NC and The Arc of NC in provision of supports to individuals and families across the state. More recently, she was the VP of Clinical Services for Easter Seals UCP NC & VA. In collaboration with the Medical Director there, she oversaw the provision of services and supports to individuals with intellectual/developmental disability, autism spectrum disorder, and mental illness. Dr. Hinton earned a B.S. in psychology from North Carolina State University and a Ph.D. in psychology from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

Karen Weigle, PhD, Associate Director, Center for START Servicesis a clinical psychologist with over 25 years of experience working with people with Autism and other Developmental Disabilities and their families. As the Associate Director of the Center for START Services, she facilitates program implementation, provides expert training and consultation services, and conducts research. Dr. Weigle is also a founder of and clinician at the Chattanooga Autism Center in Chattanooga, Tennessee. She has extensive experience working as part of an interdisciplinary team and in several medical specialty clinics and wards and has provided assessment and intervention services in a variety of contexts including in-home, school-based, clinic-based, agency-based, hospital-based, and community crisis response. She has previously directed or co-directed programs that provide services spanning East Tennessee and oversight of a large number of service providers. Dr. Weigle has experience in training family practice and medical specialty residents, special educators, community-based services providers, families, Early Intervention Specialists, and laypersons. Her teaching experience varies from undergraduate psychology courses to special education graduate-level seminars.

Jennifer McLaren, MD, Medical Advisor, Center for START Servicesis an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth.  She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Notre Dame, her medical degree from the University of Medicine and Dentistry at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and completed a residency in adult psychiatry and child and adolescent psychiatry at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center. Dr. McLaren’s clinical practice focuses on caring for children, adolescents and adults with autism and neurodevelopmental disabilities. She serves as the director of the Autism Program and the director of the Developmental Disabilities Clinics at Dartmouth and provides educational opportunities for medical students, residents, and continuing medical education focused on caring for people with developmental disabilities.


Friday August 7, 2020 | Cross-Systems Crisis Prevention and Intervention

Program Schedule

Time Topic
1:00-2:30pm ET/10:00-11:30am PT Crisis Assessment & Prevention
2:30-3:00pm ET/11:30am-12:00pm PT Crisis Intervention Part I
30 min break  
3:30-4:30pm ET/12:30-1:30pm PT Crisis Intervention Part II
4:30-5:00pm ET/1:30-2:00pm PT Wrap-up

 

 

 

 

 

Cross-Systems Crisis Prevention and Intervention
Joan B. Beasley, PhD, Director, Center for START Services, and David O'Neal, MS

This presentation will provide an overview of the origins, principles and methods used in START cross-systems crisis prevention and intervention planning.

Learning Objectives:

  • Distinguish between a problem and a crisis
  • Articulate the basic principles of crisis evaluation
  • Describe the foundational principles in crisis planning and evaluation in IDD-MH
  • Discuss the role of the system of care in crisis assessment, planning and implementation
  • Explain how information and assessments inform disposition and follow up

About Today's Presenters

Joan B. Beasley, PhD, is a Research Associate Professor and Director of the Center for START Services at the UNH Institute on Disability. She holds a Ph.D. in Social Policy from the Heller School at Brandeis University, and a Master’s degree in Community Mental Health Counseling from Northeastern University. Dr. Beasley has authored and co-authored numerous publications in the field of MHIDD, and provides training in the US, Canada and Europe. She serves as co-chair of the Mental Health Special Interest Group of AUCD.

Dr. Beasley is the author and co-founder of the START program, first implemented in 1988, and has worked to promote the development of effective services for people with disabilities and their families for more than 35 years. START was cited as a model program in the 2002 US Surgeon General’s Report on mental health disparities for persons with intellectual/developmental disabilities and in 2016 the model was identified as best practice by the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine.

Dave O'Neal, MS, Project Facilitator, Center for START Services, is the Department Manager of Specialized Services at Sound mental health in Seattle, WA. David manages all IDD services and agency wide Vocational Services. Sound’s Community Networks Program consists of a 30-person, interdisciplinary staff team involved in the provision of mental health, vocational, chemical dependency, solution based systemic problem solving, and case management for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. David is responsible for the monitoring, facilitation and fulfillment of contracts with county and state divisions of mental health, substance abuse, and developmental disabilities. Sound’s Vocational Team, SoundWorks, is integrated into all mental health clinical teams and those 10 individuals oversee supported employment for all SMH clients. David has been a CSS Project Facilitator for over 7 years supporting programs in Iowa, Texas, and California. David also co-facilitates the CSS MH/IDD for Mobile Crisis Responders Training Course and the START Network Clinical Team Leader Practice Groups.


Additional Resources

Positive Psychology:

Cross-Systems Crisis Prevention and Intervention:

Kalb, L.G., Beasley, J., Caoili, A., & Klein, A. (2019). Improvement in Mental Health Outcomes and Caregiver Service Experiences Associated with the START Program. American Journal of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 124(1), 25-34.

This study examined outcomes from the Systemic, Therapeutic, Assessment, Resources, and Treatment (START) program, a community-based tertiary care model for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and mental health needs. The sample included 111 START service users and their family caregivers, who were receiving START Clinical Team services, located in the Northeast and Southwest regions of the United States. Results from the analyses found a significant 1-year pre-post improvement in caregiver service experiences and mental health symptoms of the service user. A significant decrease in psychiatric hospitalizations and emergency department visits was also found (all p < .01). These data suggest that START holds promise in improving outcomes, for both the caregiver and service user, while reducing dependence on costly and restrictive hospital-based services.

Beasley, J. B., Kalb, L., & Klein, A. (2018). Improving Mental Health Outcomes for Individuals with Intellectual Disability through the Iowa START (I-START) Program. Journal of Mental Health Research in Intellectual Disabilities, 11(4), 287-300.

Individuals with intellectual disability (ID) experience high rates of psychiatric disorders and coinciding high rates of emergency service use. The current study seeks to explore strategies to improve outcomes by reporting a one-year prospective investigation among 41 individuals (Mean age = 32 years, SD = 12) with ID and mental health needs who received specialized supports from the I-START program (Iowa Systemic, Therapeutic, Assessment, Resources and Treatment) operating in a rural region of Iowa. To supplement these data, a qualitative case study details the application of the START model. Results indicate that individuals supported by the I-START program experienced significant reductions in informant-reported problem behaviors and fewer psychiatric emergency department visits and hospitalizations over time. Findings illustrate the benefits of START in improving outcomes for individuals with ID and mental needs as well as their systems of support.

Kalb, L. G., Beasley, J., Klein, A., Hinton, J., & Charlot, L. (2016). Psychiatric hospitalisation among individuals with intellectual disability referred to the START crisis intervention and prevention program. Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, 60(12), 1153-1164.

Little is known about inpatient psychiatric hospitalisation among adults with intellectual disability (ID) in the United States. Greater research is, therefore, required to inform efforts aimed at preventing this costly and restrictive form of care. Data were from 3299 individuals with ID (mean age = 31 years; SD = 14 years) who were referred to START (Systemic, Therapeutic, Assessment, Resources, and Treatment), a community‐based crisis intervention and prevention programme. A random effects logistic regression model was used to examine the association between 11 factors and caregiver report of psychiatric hospitalisation in the past 12 months. Twenty eight percent of the sample had at least one psychiatric inpatient stay in the prior year. Factors associated with an increased likelihood of prior hospitalisation included: younger age, diagnosis of a psychotic disorder, a score of >30 on the irritability subscale of the Aberrant Behavior Checklist, increasing number of psychiatric diagnoses, less severe ID, Black/AA race and not having a home and community waiver. Among this high‐risk referred group, more than 1 in 4 individuals were hospitalised in the year prior to referral. While results from the analyses will help profile those at risk for hospitalisation, the findings suggest that interventions at the policy level may play an important role in reducing psychiatric hospitalisation.