Day One – Tuesday, Aug. 17

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Detail on Wednesday Sessions
Detail on Thursday Sessions

8:30 – 10:15 am Opening Keynote

CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Ethics

Health Equity in Action
Octavio N. Martinez, Jr., MD, MPH
Executive Director, Hogg Foundation
This presentation will emphasize the importance of understanding and addressing the social determinants of health and why true community engagement is key to achieving health equity.  The programmatic and policy work of the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health will be highlighted as well as the work of the Biden-Harris COVID-19 Health Equity Task Force.

Learning Objectives:

  •  Explain why health equity is a desired outcome for all.

Dr. Octavio N. Martinez, Jr. is the fifth Executive Director to lead the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health since its creation in 1940 at The University of Texas at Austin, where he oversees the vision, mission, goals, strategic planning and day-to-day operations of the foundation. Dr. Martinez holds an appointment of Senior Associate Vice President within the university’s Division of Diversity and Community Engagement; he is also a clinical professor in the university’s School of Social Work; and holds an adjunct professor appointment at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio School of Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry. His academic interests include minority health, health disparities and workforce issues. In addition to his administrative and academic duties, he currently serves on President Joseph Biden’s COVID-19 Health Equity Task Force.

Deconstructing Race, Racism and Inequalities in Health
Thomas A. LaVeist, PhD
Dean, Tulane University, School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine
In 1985 a U.S. government report brought racial inequalities in health to the nation’s attention. Since that time, explanation for these persistent disparities have evolved from ideas unsupported by science, such as of race health inequalities were caused by biological differences between race groups, to contemporary thinking that they are caused by social factors, such as racism. This presentation will dispel common myths about race inequalities, outline the contemporary thinking among health equity research scientists. The presentation will also explore the concept of racism and how it relates to health inequalities.

Learning Objectives:

  • Deconstruct common myths about the causes of racial inequalities in health.
  • Explain the complexity of the definition of race and racism.
  • Describe how racism effects health and health disparities

Dr. LaVeist’s work includes both qualitative and quantitative analysis. Dr. LaVeist seeks to develop an orienting framework in the development of policy and interventions to address race disparities in health-related outcomes. Specific areas of expertise include: U.S. health and social policy, the role of race in health research, social factors contributing to mortality, longevity and life expectancy, quantitative and demographic analysis and access, and utilization of health services.

10:15 – 10:30 am: Break

10:30 am – 12:00 pm: Concurrent Sessions

TRACK: Diversity and Inclusion
CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Ethics
A Journey into Transgender Mental Health
Noah Garcia
Next Quest Counseling
When seeking care, nothing is scarier to transgender individuals than a provider who’s poorly informed about the issues facing their community. From discrimination and harassment to mental health issues and the process of transitioning, having a clinician who’s informed and affirmative can make a huge difference in ensuring transgender individuals get the help they need, ultimately decreasing the risk of suicide in this population. Through firsthand accounts coupled with clinical information, this workshop will explore how you can be an affirmative provider.

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe how gender dysphoria is experienced.
  • Recite the medical, social and psychological aspects of transitioning

TRACK: Prevention
CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Emerging Issues Affecting Underage Drinking in Texas
Nicole Holt and Atalie Nitibhon, MPAff, MAHS
Texans for Safe and Drug Free Youth
Data show that young people are drinking alcohol, and that most underage drinkers access alcohol through social settings. As a community, you may have been rolling along to address this issue, then the COVID-19 pandemic began and you were thrown a curveball because alcohol policies started changing more in the past year than they have in the past 30 years. While we’re never in a static environment with our prevention efforts, the pandemic has resulted in profound changes to how alcohol is sold and accessed in Texas. Throughout the pandemic, we’ve been reevaluating how to respond to the issue and how we, as coalitions, can work together to build capacity, evaluate concerns, and ensure our prevention efforts meet these changing needs. This presentation will share some of the current trends around youth use and access to alcohol, emerging issues – like alcohol to go and home delivery of alcohol – that could exacerbate the issue, and specific action steps for assessing and addressing the problem.

Learning Objectives:

  • Explain how young people are getting alcohol (socially)
  • Describe current and emerging issues that affect youth social access to alcohol
  • Conduct data collection to assess the impact that changing alcohol policies have on youth access to alcohol.

TRACK: Treatment and Recovery
CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Implementation of Trauma-Informed Care in the
Texas Juvenile Justice Department
Scott E. LePor, DO
Medical Director, Texas Juvenile Justice Department
The Texas Model Plan for Reform is designed to take initial, meaningful steps toward providing a system that focuses on needs and risks of youth and providing better solutions to growing mental health and specialized treatment needs. TJJD and many local probation departments use measurement of prior trauma, including ACEs, as one of the tools to help determine risk and need. The backgrounds of these youth include alarming levels of childhood trauma, especially as they move deeper into the system. Using the standard 10 ACEs, studies estimate that 64 percent of the general public have at least one ACE and 12.5 percent have experienced four or more. The Model involves a risk and needs-based strategy with greater resources for probation to build what is needed to best serve as many youth as possible and a more tailored approach at the state level, especially for vulnerable youth with special needs or concerns. Attendees should attend this session to understand the science of the trauma-informed “Texas Model” and how it is being implemented within the Texas Juvenile Justice Department.

Learning Objective(s)

Upon completion of this event, participants should be able to:

•   Describe the foundational science of trauma-informed care and how interpersonal neurobiology through secure attachment brings optimal healing, growth, and connection for those who come from difficult places.

TRACK: Special Populations
CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Confronting Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment in the Military
Ron Scoggins
Texas Veterans Commission
This course addresses topics to be aware of while interacting with patients who experienced sexual assault or sexual harassment during military service and how to develop appropriate strategies for moving forward.

Learning Objective(s)

Upon completion of this event, participants should be able to:

•    Recognize signs of Military Sexual Trauma during client interactions

•   Describe four components of resilience

TRACK: Social Determinants of Health
CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
The Role of Behavioral Health Services in Ending Homelessness
Helen Eisert, LCSW-S
Texas Health and Human Services Commission
This interactive presentation will provide the nuts and bolts of the local mental/behavioral health authority’s (LMHA/LBHA) role in working to reduce and end homelessness. LMHAs/LBHAs are the largest publicly funded behavioral health provider in Texas and can have a significant impact on a community’s work to end homelessness. An overview of the Homeless Crisis Response will be provided and the LMHA/LBHAs role in this crisis response. Participants will learn skills for how to better advocate for and support people experiencing homelessness and receiving services from the LMHA.
Learning Objective(s)
Upon completion of this event, participants should be able to:

•   Define the role of the LMHA in serving people experiencing homelessness with behavioral health conditions.

•   Describe the homeless crisis response system and how different programs in their community interact with this crisis response.

TRACK: Skills Building
CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Suicide Safe Care: Understanding Suicide’s Impact & How to Help
Laura Gold, LCSW-S, Jennifer Crutsinger, LPS, Bethaney Myers, MPH, MCHES, Tammy Weppelman, LPC-S
Texas Health and Human Services Commission
“If we want a world where people feel like their lives are worth living, we can’t have a society that says that some lives are worth more than others.” Anonymous

“Behind every statistic is a tear.” Jerry Reed, Senior Vice President for Practice Leadership, Education Development Center (EDC)

In 2019, 47,511 people in the United States died by suicide; 3,891 of these individuals were from Texas. Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in our state and is the second leading cause for people 10 to 34 years old. On average, one person dies by suicide every two hours in Texas. Suicide affects all of us, so how we talk about suicide matters. Data and the importance of looking at it from a culturally informed lens will be presented, as well
as evidence-based prevention, intervention, and postvention tools, including treatments for thoughts of suicide. Trainings for specific populations, as well as an overall description of the state’s suicide prevention team and their efforts will be discussed. Resources and informative brochures will be provided to all participants at the end of the presentation.

Learning Objective(s)

Upon completion of this event, participants should be able to:

•   List the evidence-based tools for screening for suicide and for safety planning

• Identify with thoughts of suicide

12:00 – 1:15 pm: Lunch Break

1:15 – 2:15 pm: Concurrent Sessions

TRACK: Prevention
CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Using Social Media to Detect Substance Use Trends
Jessica Duncan Cance, MPH, PhD
RTI International
The purpose of this presentation is to describe work examining the use of social media to detect substance use trends during the COVID-19 pandemic. We used social media listening techniques to determine shifts in mentioning the use of alcohol and cannabis before, during, and after the national emergency declaration (March 13, 2020).

Learning Objective(s)

Upon completion of this event, participants should be able to:

•   Describe methods to track substance use trends on social media

TRACK: Treatment and Recovery
CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Peers: The Core to Achieving Outcomes
Janet Paleo
Texas Council of Community Centers
Research shows incorporating peers into mental health service provision yields great outcomes. However, incorporating peers within the system seems to lag behind the research. When peers are incorporated, often they are doing jobs which are not “peer work”. In this session, we will look at why incorporating peers need to be the core of all mental health systems. Additionally, we will look at what is “peer work” and look at why the turnover in peer work is so high.

Learning Objective(s)

Upon completion of this event, participants should be able to:

  • Participants will understand what “peer work” is and what it is not.
  • Participants will realize why peers should be the core of all services.
  • Participants will explore how to prevent high turnover.

TRACK: Special Populations
CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Older Adults and Opioid Misuse
Holly Riley
HHSC Aging Services
This presentation will seek to provide you basic statistical information on Texas’ aging population including information on the increasing occurrence of substance use issues in older adults. The speaker will review some common misconceptions about substance use and aging, and its effects on families and services and supports available for older adults.

Learning Objective(s)

Upon completion of this event, participants should be able to:

•    Describe options for identifying and assisting older adults who may be experiencing substance use and mental health problems

•    List three available resources for getting help for older adults who may be experiencing substance use and mental health disorders.

TRACK: Diversity and Inclusion and Social Determinants of Health
CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Ethics
Cultural Humility: Lessons in Reconnecting and Humanizing Communities
Dr. Miguel Gallardo, PsyD
The Center for Latinx Communities at Pepperdine University
The current sociocultural and political climates in the United States elucidates the importance of understanding our shared humanity while fostering deeper cross-cultural relationships. As the nation faces challenges that are creating more darkness and divisiveness, our ability to engage in thoughtful and meaningful discourse on cultural issues remains ever present. Remembering our shared humanity and connectedness, in spite of our current challenges, has never been more paramount. This presentation addresses the impact of racial capitalism, racial colorblindness, implicit bias, and colorism on our (in)ability to create structural changes. It is hoped that attendees gain an understanding of how to enhance multicultural relationships, and work towards more antiracist-intersectional practices, both personally and professionally.

Learning Objective(s)

Upon completion of this event, participants should be able to:

•    Identify why cultural humility is essential in changing the nature by which we understand ourselves and others.

•    Identify at least two ways in which professionals can address their own implicit biases.

•    Identify at least two ways to increase one’s antiracist and social justice work in their professional capacities.

TRACK: Self-Care
CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Self-Care: The Session That Focuses on You!
Rishi Sawhney, MD
Texas Health and Human Services Commission
This session will describe the importance of self-care, provide examples of self-care, and attendees will be asked to engage self-care activities during the session.

Learning Objective(s)

Upon completion of this event, participants should be able to:

  • Know how to integrate self-care activities in their daily routine

2:15 – 2:30 pm: Break

2:30 – 3:30 pm: Afternoon Keynote

CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Ethics
Recovery Oriented Systems of Care: Understanding Disparities and Building Health Equity
Haner Hernandez, PhD, CPS, CADCII, LADCI
Behavioral Health Workforce Leadership Development Institute, Inc.
This session will ground the conversation on the need to develop and contribute to Recovery Oriented Systems of Care designed to reach all communities. We will also explore the development of disparities in the US and their impacts on marginalized communities. Utilizing a social justice framework the participants will learn about building health equity and community engagement. Participants will also learn about approaches and strategies grounded in cultural humility and cultural intelligence.
Learning Objective(s)

Upon completion of this event, participants should be able to:

•    Describe role in contributing to a Recovery Oriented System of Care;

•    Describe the concepts of cultural humility and cultural intelligence; and

•    Define health disparities and the need to create health equity.

Dr. Hernández is originally from Puerto Rico, is bilingual and has worked for 32 years in the health and human service field developing, implementing, and evaluating culturally and linguistically intelligent youth and adult health prevention, intervention, treatment, and recovery support programs. Also, Dr. Hernández has many years of experience in delivering addiction counseling and clinical supervision to professionals in the field. Furthermore, he is a professional trainer and facilitator and provides individualized technical assistance and support to organizations that provide addiction prevention, intervention, treatment and recovery supports.

3:30 – 3:45 pm: Break

3:45 – 4:45 pm: Afternoon Keynote

CEU Credits: CME, CNE, SW, CHES, CPH, LMFT, LPC, Lic Psych, LCDC, CPS/CFP, Cert. Peer Sup.
Ethics
Child and Youth Resilience in a Post-Pandemic World
Dr. Gary Blau
The Hackett Center for Mental Health, Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute
The COVID-19 global health emergency and its economic and social impacts have disrupted nearly all aspects of life for all groups in society. People of different ages, however, are experiencing its effects in different ways. For young people, and especially for vulnerable youth, the COVID-19 crisis poses considerable risks. Youth and future generations will shoulder much of the long-term economic and social consequences of the crisis and their well-being may be superseded by short-term economic and equity considerations. During this presentation, the speaker will discuss how to continue to support resilience in young people as we emerge from the global pandemic. He will detail the importance of integrated care, trauma and grief informed interventions and the use of measurement-based care. He will also provide a history and context for the system of care framework and the importance of engaging youth and families in all aspects of treatment and system reform efforts.
Learning Objective(s)

Upon completion of this event, participants should be able to:

•    Describe the impact of trauma and grief on child and youth mental health.

•    Articulate the importance of using an integrated approach to providing mental health services.

•    Recite the ‘system of care’ framework and the importance of engaging youth and families in all aspects of treatment and system reform.

Dr. Blau is a licensed clinical psychologist who joined the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute as Executive Director of The Hackett Center for Mental Health in September of 2019.  Prior to that he was Chief of the Child, Adolescent and Family Branch for the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) where he provided national leadership for child, adolescent and young adult mental health, and created “systems of care” across the United States.

Dr. Blau also served as the Bureau Chief for Quality Management and Director of Mental Health at the Connecticut Department of Children and Families (DCF), and the Director of Clinical Services for the Child and Family Agency of Southeastern, Connecticut. He has been acknowledged as the “father” of Youth MOVE (Youth Motivating Others through Voices of Experience), which now has over 60 chapters nationwide, and as the “founder” of the “National Building Bridges Initiative (BBI),” which is focused on improving outcomes for youth who receive residential interventions.