The Importance of Assessments in Helping People with Intellectual Disability and Mental Health and/or Behavioral Challenges: New Ways to Address Antipsychotic Medications and their Side Effects and Ways to Assess Trauma


pdf File Antipsychotic Medication to Address Challenging Behavior (451KB) [download]

pdf File Assessing Trauma in Individuals with ID (1,293KB) [download]

Archived Recording
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Wednesday, December 11, 2013- Wednesday, December 11, 2013
3:00 PM EST - 4:30 PM EST

Webinar Description:

Assessing behavioral difficulties in a person with intellectual and developmental disabilities can be a challenge due to limitations in verbal self-report as well as multiple cognitive and physical disabilities.  The purpose of this webinar was to introduce unique assessment approaches in two different areas.  The first area concerns the national crisis in overuse of antipsychotic medications to treat challenging behavior and non-psychotic mental health conditions.  Participants will gain a deeper understanding of the issues and will learn about the use of the MEDS (Matson Evaluation of Drug Side-Effects) as a tool to not only identify possible side-effects, but to also engage family, disability professionals and mental health providers in a serious discussion of the efficacy, risks and benefits for each individual.  The second presentation will address the assessment of trauma in this population.  Due to the alarming rates of abuse and neglect of people with intellectual disabilities, as well as diagnostic overshadowing that often occurs when people with ID seek treatment, it is important that clinicians have the knowledge and tools to properly recognize signs of trauma and assess its impact on an individual. 


Anne Desnoyers Hurley, Ph.D.  Dr. Hurley is the Clinical Director and Research Associate Professor at the Center for START Services, University of New Hampshire Institute on Disability-UCEDD.  Dr. Hurley has specialized in helping people with intellectual disability and mental health conditions for over 40 years.  She began her career in neuropsychology and behavioral therapies in the VA Hospitals system working with clients who had mood and anxiety disorders as well as schizophrenia.   During her internship at Boston State Hospital in 1973, she began a specialization in mental health and challenging behavior for people with intellectual disability.   Since that time, she has worked in many psychiatric inpatient and outpatient centers as well as community agencies.  In addition, she has published over 100 papers on mental health and intellectual disability and has served on editorial boards of several specialized journals in this field. Her current research interests are in the psychiatric diagnosis of people referred to the START programs, their associated medical conditions, psychiatric medications prescribed, and reported side effects.

Brian D. Tallant, L.P.C. Brian Tallant is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Program Director at the Aurora Mental Health Center, in Aurora, Colorado.  Brian manages Intercept Center, a mental health outpatient and day treatment program for children who have a dual diagnosis of developmental disability and co-occurring mental health disorder.  Brian is on the Board of Directors for the National Association for Dual Diagnosis (NADD), and is a contributing member of the Adapted Treatment Work Group of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network.  Brian conducts workshops nationally and internationally on adapted therapies for children who have developmental disabilities, and is a certified trainer for Crisis Prevention Institute's Non-Violent Crisis Intervention.