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2016 NYSPA Convention

June 3-4, 2016
Crowne Plaza, White Plains

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Friday, June 3

12:00 - 4:00 pm Red Cross Training (4 CE Credit)

This workshop will provide training in fundamentals of Disaster Mental Health response. It includes information participants need to understand in order to participate in a response when disaster happens. Participants who complete this course will be eligible to join the American Red Cross and/or NYSPA’s Disaster Response Network as a Disaster Mental Health Volunteer. 

4:00 - 5:00 pm Perspectives on Trauma Treatment and Interventions in the Immediate Aftermath of a Trauma and in a Case of Complex Trauma

Panel Chair: Sharon Brennan, PhD (NYSPA DRN Chair)
Discussant: Jill Bellinson, PhD

Emotional First Aid: Lessons Learned from 9-11 with Evelyn Rappoport, PsyD

In our post 9-11 world, intractable, escalating conflicts, violent attacks, and recurring, unrelenting disasters are increasing in alarming and unprecedented rates. These unfathomable events continuously challenge our sense of safety and predictability and can compromise our coping mechanisms. Traumatic symptoms, whether a consequence of developmental trauma or acute incidents, are often embedded in the body, creating habitual patterns of constriction, dissociation, anxiety and pain.

Dr. Rappoport will offer a conceptual framework with applied somatic interventions that can be applied on an individual and collective level in the aftermath of a trauma. Emphasizing specific techniques, including resourcing, grounding and nervous system regulation, she will demonstrate ways of working with the fear circuitry to restore the organic homeostatic mechanism of our inborn survival system.   

Treating the Whole Person with Complex Trauma with Linda I. Meyers, PsyD

Dr. Meyers will present her treatment of a veteran suffering from complex trauma whom she has worked with from a relational psychoanalytic approach that focuses on understanding PTSD as it relates to the history and psychology of the whole person.  She will also discuss her work with the Soldier’s Project, a not-for-profit organization that offers free, open-ended, confidential treatment to PTSD soldiers and their families, who often suffer from complex trauma. To illustrate her perspectives on complex trauma, she will present a case of a veteran who suffered trauma before, during and then again after his discharge from the service.  

2:00 - 5:00 PM Privacy and Confidentiality in the Modern Age (No CE)

Presenters: Eric Marine, American Professional Agency & Jonathan D. Rubin, Esq, Kaufman, Borgeest & Ryan, LLP

With the enacting of HIPAA and HITECH, the parameters of confidentiality have been defined by Federal Law.. Also the integration of electronic records have been addressed. There are new and expensive penalties for failure to follow these laws. Additionally, state laws still impact licensure and the continuance of practice. These aspects and more will be reviewed and strategies will be discussed to lessen or remove the penalties associated with breaches in these areas.


Saturday, June 4

8:30 - 10:00 am Morning Keynote & Ethics Panel

Melba Vasquez: Practice Ethics 

The Image of Psychology: Ethical Challenges and Aspirations toward Ethical Excellence
Panel includes Drs. Melba Vazquez, Peter Kanaris, June Feder, Shara Sand and Steven Reisner

10:15 - 11:30 am Session 1

Psychology and Technology: Cutting Edge Applications for Practice, Treatment & Assessment (1 CE Credit)
Presenter: Robert Kassoff, PhD

Psychology can be significantly enhanced through the integration of technology.  Adding technological advancements into the daily operation of a practice yields significant benefits to both clinician and patient. These hi tech tools and those that administer assessment instruments and assist therapeutic interventions will be discussed.  The savvy clinician who utilizes these tools will enhance treatment effectiveness, patient satisfaction and financial reward.

Reducing the Risk of Violence Among People with Co-occurring Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders
Presenter: Joel Dvoskin, PhD, ABPP

The risk of violence among people with serious mental illness has been exaggerated. While mental illness does raise the risk of violence, compared to other known risk factors, it is relatively insignificant. However, among people with SMI, the risk of violence is highest among people with co-occurring substance use disorders, especially with alcohol and stimulants. Research shows that parallel treatment and serial treatment do not work; the person's best chance of recovery required integrated treatment of co-occurring disorders (COD). In order to reduce the risk of violence among people with COD, we must help them to avoid life crises.

The Ethics of Sexual Addiction Treatment Reexamined: An Innovative Client Centered Approach to the Treatment of Out of Control Sexual Behaviors (No CE)

Presenter: Peter Kanaris, PhD

This presentation will examine the controversies surrounding the concept of sexual addiction. Participants will learn the respective conceptualizations that hail from the field of addiction and the field of mental health. A pragmatic model for the treatment of out-of-control sexual behavior will be presented.

When Alice Meets Eve: A Psychodrama in the Gardens of the Known and Unknown (No CE)

Presenters: Evelyn Rappoport, PhD & Leanne Domash, PhD

This two person dark comedy features the biblical Eve of the Garden of Eden and Alice Liddell who, at age ten, was the inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland. This play within a play is about being seen and not seen, about the known and the unknown and about trauma, dissociation and healing.

Haunted by her celebrity status, Alice remains fixated at a younger age, when she was traumatized by Carroll's sexually inappropriate behavior.  Eve, a two thousand year old grandmother, time-travels to meet and counsel twenty-three year old Alice. Together, they fall back into Wonderland where surprising transformations happen for all. Read more...



12:00 - 1:15 pm Session 2

Proposed Duty-to-Protect Law: Practical Guidance for Practitioners (No CE)
Presenters: Tom Caffrey, PhD, Dan Antonius, PhD & Robin MacFarlane, PhD

Fewer than half of NYS psychologists, and of psychologists nationwide, know what is required of them, or how, or whether, they are protected legally, when they need to breach patient confidentiality to protect a patient or third party from danger. The presentation will provide guidance, with practical exercises, on what the proposed law will expect of practitioners; how it will protect them from civil and criminal actions and from professional disciplinary measures; and what steps they should take until the law is passed.

Treating Children and Families in the Context of High-Conflict Divorce (1 CE Credit)

Presenters: Deena Abbe, PhD, Neil Grossman, PhD & Robin Lynch, PhD

You will learn about psychotherapy for children and families in a contested divorce and the unique demands on the psychologist in these situations. We will identify the risks associated with these cases and how to successfully engage and treat children while avoiding the minefields that result from the parents' highly conflicted relationship.  These treatment skills can be applied to general psychotherapy and the understanding of the role of conflict.

Babies Bounce Back: Resilience in Families in the Foster Care System, a Novel Dyadic Treatment Perspective (1 CE Credit)

Presenters: Jill Bellinson, PhD, Phyllis Cohen, PhD & Andrea Remez, PhD

This panel will present an innovative program for promoting successful parent-infant relationships in the most adverse circumstances: within the Protective Services system. Working with parents who have been or are at risk for being separated from their young children, the project focuses on mentalization (Fonagy, Slade, Steele and Steele) and attunement (Beebe) and results in stronger parent-infant relationships and better parenting skills. Panelists will describe the project, including theoretical background and models of treatment and supervision. We will illustrate with comparisons of videotape clips of mother-infant dyads taken at the beginning of treatment and several months later, demonstrating dramatic changes in the quality of their interactions.


Prescriptive Authority for Psychologists (No CE)
Presenters: Virginia Waters, PhD, Daniel Kaplin, PhD & Keith Westerfield, PhD

This symposium is designed to review the state of RxP (prescriptive authority for psychologists). Dr. Waters, Chair of New York State Psychological Association’ RxP Committee, will discuss the current efforts to obtain prescriptive authority in New York State. Dr. Kaplin will follow with an analysis of the views on New York State Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants in terms of prescriptive authority. Dr. Westerfield will conclude by presenting on the gaps in service across the nation and New York State. 


1:30 - 3:15 Luncheon/Afternoon Keynote

Joel Dvoskin: Insights Into Defusing Violence and Safely Resolving Crises 

Preventing violence, of course, starts long before a crisis has developed. Creating a professional, helping relationship reduces the likelihood of client violence, but it does not eliminate it. Further, some types of interactions, especially forensic evaluations, require the psychologist to refrain from creating the pretense that the psychologist is there to help the person being evaluated. Methods such as confrontation are only safe to the degree that one has adequately assessed the client's ability to tolerate this kind of distress. Intimacy, which is often the hallmark of meaningful therapy, can terrify some clients. In this highly interactive sessions, Dr. Dvoskin will discuss steps that every psychologist should take to remain safe, and to identify and defuse crises that appear likely to evolve into interpersonal violence. 

3:30 - 4:45 pm: Session 3

Self-Evaluating Minimizes Risk for Psychologists: The Assimilative Family Therapy Model (1 CE Credit)
Presenter: Pat Pitta, PhD, ABPP

This client is a danger to himself; this couple is just too combative and possibly violent; this child case is part of a very contentious custody battle and I am not sure if I can help these clients? Through the Assimilative Family Therapy model learn how to self-evaluate and get in touch with your patterns of behaviors that informs your decisions and thinking when engaging clients and families enabling you to avoid the many pitfalls of managing risk.

Attachment, Regulation and Mentalization (ARM): Making Contact with and Containing the Hard to Reach/Traumatized Adolescent  (1 CE Credit)
Presenter: Amelio D’Onofrio, PhD
Discussant: Susan Warshaw, PhD, ABPP

Trauma often results in the loss of secure attachment, especially for adolescents who’ve lost hope that others can be supportive, protective, and caring. As a result, traumatized youth often find it difficult to trust that a therapist has their best interests at heart, which makes engagement difficult and volatility likely. This presentation proposes avenues toward fostering security in the therapeutic relationship by exploring the developmental sequelae of trauma, the challenges of limit-setting and frame management, as well as the effects of our countertransferential vulnerabilities.

Introducing the Long Island School Practitioner Action Network (LISPAN) (No CE)
Presenter: Tony Pantaleno, PhD

This program will introduce LISPAN, a voluntary network of school-based mental health crisis professionals who serve to provide backup resources to its members in the event of a large-scale school crisis which may deplete the resources of any local district. The history, operation, and challenges of this type of network will be explored, including detailed instructions on the establishment of other statewide regional crisis teams. Visit for details.

The State of Psychology: Where We Are, Where We Are Going (No CE)

Presenter: Jerry Grodin, PhD

The Affordable Care Act and Medicaid Redesign have had a profound influence on how mental health services will be delivered, This presentation will focus on private practice and the expected changes in reimbursement models and out of network benefits. We will also explore the role of metric in private practice.


5:00 - 6:15 pm: Session 4

How to Protect Your Patient and Yourself:  Simple Techniques for Managing Suicide Risk (1 CE Credit)
Presenter: Shane Owens, PhD, ABPP

Dr. Owens will provide basic techniques for assessing and managing suicide risk. It will include simple additions to a standard clinical interview, easy-to-remember methods for classifying risk, and efficient and effective methods for dealing with at-risk patients. Dr. Owens will use case examples to demonstrate the use of these techniques and to highlight situations that require changes to different methods of care.

Effective Therapy for Substance Abuse Problems and Other Risky Behavior in Your Practice (1 CE Credit)
Presenter: Andrew Tatarsky, PhD

Dr. Tatarsky will introduce his Integrative Harm Reduction Psychotherapy (IHRP) model for treating the entire spectrum of substance use problems and other risky behavior. He will discuss the scientific revolution in addiction treatment toward a psychobiosocial view of addiction, the multiple meanings model and the Transtheoretical stages of change model; models compatible with psychologists' training. Finally, he will present an overview of IHRP’s 7 therapeutic tasks and demonstrate specific skills that you can begin using immediately in your practice.

Integrated Health Training: Application to Homeless Youth and Spanish Speaking Underserved
Populations (No CE)
Presenter: Dinelia Rosa, PhD

The symposium presents an integrated health training program developed at Teachers College with the support of federal funds and the overarching goals of increasing knowledge, clinical skills and interprofessional skills of integrated care with vulnerable, underserved Spanish-speaking medical patients. Application of the model in two different sites will be presented: 1) the New York-Presbyterian Rafael Tavares Clinic, a Spanish-bilingual outpatient mental health clinic with clients dealing with multiple medical conditions, and 2) community primary care clinic.

Overview of the MCMI-IV (sponsored by Pearson) (No CE)
Peter Entwistle, PhD

We will review the time span for norming of the test. It was designed for ages: 18-65+. The MCMI-IV has the following features:

  • 5 validity indices; 15 personality scales; 10 clinical syndrome scales
  • Designed to assess syndrome in context with personality style/disorder
  • Base Rate scores rather than T-scores; anchored to prevalence data for a particular disorder; no assumption of normal curve
  • Scales designed to be closely coordinated to DSM constructs
  • Final test form will consist of 195 items

The MCMI-IV was intended to illuminate dimensions of personality. We will review Millon's notion of spectrum as applied to the new scales, and his concept of polarities. We will also explore the idea of treatment process follow up. We will also review the Grossman Facet Scales.


 6:30 - 8:00 pm Reception


Register Now!


Registration Fees:


Full Convention - includes all programming, Friday coffee break, Saturday breakfast, Saturday lunch and Saturday reception

Member: $385; Non-Member: $465


Saturday Only - includes Saturday programming, Saturday breakfast, Saturday lunch and Saturday reception
Member: $345; Non-Member: $425


Friday Only - Includes choice of Friday program and coffee break
Member: $125; Non-Member: $180


Student (with Valid ID) - includes all programming, Friday coffee break, Saturday breakfast, Saturday lunch and Saturday reception
Member: $200; Non-Member: $235


Guest (non-psychologist guest of registered attendee) - includes Saturday breakfast, Saturday lunch and Saturday reception. Guests may not attend sessions.


Hotel Accommodations

Hotel accommodations at the Crowne Plaza Downtown are available for conference attendees.  Click here to book your hotel accommodations or call 877-270-1393 and mention group code PA7.