NAMI Santa Clara County in collaboration with Good Samaritan Hospital brings a reputable community expert to speak about one of the critical areas which directly impact the quality of life for those affected by a mental illness. This monthly General Meeting is open to anyone interested in learning more about mental illness. The General Meeting is held in the auditorium at Good Samaritan Hospital on the second Tuesday of each month (except July, August & December). We meet at 7:00 PM, with everyone sharing information and welcoming newcomers. At 7:30 PM there is a half-hour information session on NAMI Santa Clara County activities. Our featured program presentation begins at 8:00 PM.
Upcoming General Meeting
Tuesday, April 11, 2017 – Dr. Kate Hardey, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Psychosis
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Psychosis (CBTp) is an evidence-based practice that aims to reduce distress associated with psychotic symptoms and improve functioning. More recently CBTp has been used to help family members learn key skills and tools to support their own mental health as well as that of their loved ones. This talk will provide an overview of CBTp including core components of the approach and practice.
Kate Hardy is a California Licensed Psychologist who has specialized in working with individuals with psychosis for over 15 years in both research and clinical settings. Dr. Hardy received her doctorate in clinical
psychology from the University of Liverpool, UK. She has worked in specialist early psychosis services in both the UK and the US, including UCSF’s Prodrome Assessment Research & Treatment (PART) program, and as Clinical Director for the Prevention and Recovery from Early Psychosis (PREP) program.
Join us in the auditorium of Good Samaritan Hospital (basement of main building) at 7:30 P.M. for NAMI Santa Clara update followed by the above presentation and Q&A from 8-9 P.M. *NOTE: Good Samaritan Hospital is located at 2425 Samaritan Drive, San Jose.
Prior General Meetings
March 14, 2017 – Jeff Rosen, SCC District Attorney, “Race and Prosecutions in SCC”
“Is there racial unfairness in our criminal justice system? How would we know? If there is racial unfairness, what should be done?” The Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office has completed a three-year study that provides some answers, but raises more questions.
Mr. Rosen joined the DA’s Office in 1995 and was elected District Attorney in 2010. He has successfully prosecuted many complex and high-profile criminal cases. Before joining the DA’s Office, Mr. Rosen practiced commercial litigation in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. He graduated from UCLA and received his law degree from UC Berkeley’s School of Law. Mr. Rosen is active in the community, having served as president of a synagogue, taught trial advocacy to law students and trained police officers in report writing.
February 14, 2017 – Dr. Kim Bullock, “CBT and DBT”
(April 2017 Newsletter Write-Up) Dr. Kim Bullock is the director of the Neurobehavioral Clinic and Visual Reality Lab at Stanford University School of Medicine. Her area of expertise is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). Dr. Bullock is a neuropsychiatrist by training and deals with the interface between psychiatry and neurology.
When a patient has a psychiatric disorder, the conventional route of therapy has been psycho-therapy; it is an interpersonal treatment based on psychological principles. The choice of the most appropriate type of psychotherapy is based on each patient’s specific problems.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is an evidence-based treatment for psychiatric problems such as anxiety, panic disorder, eating disorders and schizophrenia. In CBT the therapist often helps the patient identify and correct maladaptive behaviors, judgmental and overly negative inaccurate thinking. CBT often includes education, relaxation exercises, coping skills training and stress management. Empathy is very important.
In the acute phase of a patient’s disorder, com-bined medication and psychotherapy have been shown to be superior to each one alone. However CBT has been shown to have more enduring effects compared with medication when both are discontinued. Dr. Bullock suggested the book Feeling Good as well as the Feeling Good Handbook by David Burns, M.D. For info, visit www.feelinggoodinstitute.com
Another type of therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, has been shown to be effective in treating patients who have varied symptoms and behaviors associated with mood disorders, eating disorders, self-injury, sexual abuse survivors, childhood trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder and chemical dependence. The support is highly specialized. DBT combines standard cognitive behavioral techniques with enhanced emotion regulation and teaches distress tolerance with concepts such as acceptance and mindfulness of the present moment (from Buddhist tradition). It helps reduce life-interfering behavior and vulnerability.
DBT is very effective in the mental health environment, residential and hospital. For more information about Stanford University’s DBT program, contact adult intake (650-498-9111) or adolescent intake (650-723-5511).
January 20, 2017 – Linsey Utzinger, Ph.D., Anxiety Disorders-Identification and Treatments
(March 2017 Newsletter Write-Up) Dr. Linsey Utzinger is a Clinical Assistant Professor at Stanford University School of Medicine and Chairperson of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. She specializes in eating disorders but deals with other types of anxiety problems that can occur.
Dr. Utzinger noted that it is important to distinguish between normal anxiety and abnormal behavior. Abnormal behavior is very difficult to control and gets in the way of everyday life. A person overthinks everything and has many fears; for example, you may constantly check your front door or worry, did I forget to turn off the oven? You may be paranoid and overly cautious. You may feel nervous, overanxious, worried, stressed, on edge or always doubting yourself. And you may feel you are not good enough.
You can develop maladaptive practices, such as overeating or undereating, seeking isolation, trying to escape, and so on. Everyone has anxiety to a normal degree, but when it is maladaptive it impairs one’s ability to work, take responsibility at home or in daily life, as well as in relation-ships.
The etiology of anxiety is thought to be multifaceted. Some people suffer from genetic vulnerabilities; others suffer because of past trauma or stress. Approximately 25% of adults in the U.S. have a mental illness in their lifetime. Anxiety and depression are the most common forms, with nearly 40 million adults suffering and twice as many women as men, with the incidence being more common in those under age 35. The majority of individuals have at least one other diagnosable mental illness at some point in their lives. It is important that the person undergo a psychiatric or psychological diagnostic evaluation to help in coping. Treatment can consist of psychotherapy, medication, mindfulness and/or exercise.
Untreated anxiety disorders can cause significant personal and social costs, loss of work and frequent medical visits. Dr. Utzinger can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
October 11, 2016 – Adrian Camp, “Madness and Voices of Understanding”
Adrian Camp (a.k.a. Adrian Bernard) is currently the manager at 2nd Story Peer Respite House in Santa Cruz. In addition to talking about his work, Adrian will share his own connection to varying states of madness, delusions, voices, broadcast thoughts and any number of experiences of extreme states toward mental health.
Adrian spent 20 years finding his way through the tumult of breakdowns, hospitalizations and persecution by others and self. Through good fortune & faith, he survived the nightmares. He found common ground with others and perceives his life thru the mental health community.
Adrian graduated from UC Santa Cruz and has been with 2nd Story Peer Respite House over the past 5 years. He has also taught every NAMI class possible. NAMI helped him to find his voice.
September 13, 2016 – Thomas Tarshis, M.D., Bay Area Children’s Association (BACA)
In terms of mental health treatment, we know that there are drastic differences in the ability of youth and families to receive care as compared to other illnesses. This disparity led to the formation of the Bay Area Children’s Association (BACA). Dr. Tom Tarshis, founder of BACA, with a BA in Zoology, MPD in Epidemiology and MD in Psychiatry, is striving to make a difference.
There is a crisis in the mental health system when the fourth leading cause of death among youth ages 5 to 24 is from suicide. Half of all mental illness begins before age 14, and three-fourths before age 24. Yet, the average delay before treatment occurs is 8 to 10 years. The wait time, lack of resources, lack of insurance and screening problems have led to inadequate mental health care for youth. Care fragmentation in the current system for children and parents in school and social services results in inadequate coverage. BACA is beginning to address these issues through continuity of care (school and home). The best model of care should include: Child Individual Treatment , Family Treatment, Caregiver Treatment (Individual/Couples), School Interventions, and Primary Care Collaboration.
In the U.S. today, there are 8,000 practicing child psychiatrists, and we need more than 30,000. In the Bay Area, 3,000 are needed, but there are only 1,000. According to Dr. Tarshis, the solution to this shortage is to involve other mental health clinicians: psychologists, therapists and social workers. Currently, BACA has 13 child psychiatrists on staff.
Advice for Parents: Ask questions; speak to your mental health providers about best scientific methods to treat your child’s symptoms; challenge insurance companies; become familiar with the term “Evidence-Based Medicine” (EBM) and challenge care providers to deliver the best EBM possible, meaning scientific, integrated care in one setting.
Advocacy: It is morally and ethically wrong for youth with mental illness to not receive the same quality and level of care as youth with other illnesses.
Schools: Fight against old policies and demand that schools provide harassment-free environments for learning as required by law.
Audio/Video Recording of Recent Meetings
You will need an mp3 player to play the following audio files. Most modern computers will already have one installed. Winamp is a free mp3 player if your computer does not already have one.
October: Nev Jones, PhD Presentation: Engaging With Psychosis: Beyond the Status Quo –
September:. Judge Richard J. Loftus. Presentation: Mentally Ill and the California Justice System.
July: No General Meeting in July
June: Presentaton: Treatment for People with Psychotic Disorders
Speaker: Dr. Jacob Ballon — Santa Clara Valley Medical Center
May: Presentation: Healing from Within: Can Meditation Make Us Healthier?
Speaker: Bob Horowitz, M.D. — Santa Clara Valley Medical Center
April: Presentation of Documentary The Shaken Tree: Families Living with Mental Illness
Presenter: Diana Guido — Behavioral Health Department’s Office of Family
March: Presentation by Michael Fitzgerald, Executive Director of Behavioral Health Services at El Camino Hospital, and Daniel Becker, M.D. Medical Director for Behavioral Health Services at Mills Peninsula Health Services
February: Presentation by Dr Sandra Macias, Director of the Gronowski Center: “An overview of the Gronowski Clinic”
January: Presentation by Dr Victoria Stanton: “Ask the Doctor: Latest Medications”