MIRECC / CoE
Newsletter | Spring 2022 | South Central MIRECC
Highlights from Our Anchor Sites
Our affiliates in Houston, Little Rock, New Orleans, and VISN 17 work hard to promote mental health education, research, and treatment locally and nationally. Here are some highlights of their accomplishments over the past three months.
Drs. Natalie Hundt and Terri Fletcher Awarded Grant for OCD Intervention
Drs. Hundt and Fletcher’s new grant, “Exposure and Response Prevention to Improve Functioning in Veterans with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD),” was funded by VA Rehabilitation Research and Development. Their four-year randomized controlled trial will compare outcomes of exposure and response prevention to those of a control condition among Veterans with OCD. They will also examine whether Veterans' functioning, quality of life, and OCD symptoms differ between the arms of the trial.
Dr. Mark Kunik Received BCM Clark Award and Published Book Review Article
Congratulations to Dr. Kunik, who received the Baylor College of Medicine Clark Award in recognition of professionalism and community service.
Dr. Melissa Jones Received Career Development Award
Dr. Jones, a former SC MIRECC Fellow, was awarded a VA Rehabilitation Research and Development Career Development Award titled “Pimavanserin for Insomnia in Veterans with Post-traumatic Stress Disorder.” Dr. Kunik is serving as a secondary mentor on the grant.
Dr. Geoff Curran Received Endowed Chair at UAMS
Congratualtions to Dr. Curran, who was formally invested as the recipient of the Endowed Chair in Pharmacy Practice Innovation in April. This distinguished honor was invested in the University of Arkansas for Medicine College of Pharmacy.Learn More
Dr. Rajinder (Sonia) Singh Receives Outstanding Research Achievement Award
Congratulations to Dr. Singh for receiving the VA Psychology Outstanding Research Achievement Award at Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System. Her research includes a a program evaluation of the national LGBTQ+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer with the + including identities beyond LGBTQ) Veteran Care Coordinator program in VA. The goals of this grant are to analyze existing program data, collect additional qualitative data related to barriers and facilitators of LGBTQ+ Veteran Care Coordinators’ abilities to carry out their task, and design an implementation toolkit that includes best practices for LGBTQ+ Veteran Care Coordinators. Dr. Singh is also completing an evaluation of provider and LGBTQ+ Veteran perspectives of LGBTQ+ affirming care within VISN 16.
Dr. Eva Woodward Accepted to SBM Diversity Institute for Emerging Leaders
Dr. Woodward was selected to the 2022 cohort for the Society of Behavioral Medicine’s (SBM) Diversity Institute for Emerging Leaders. The purpose of this year-long program is to help early-career SBM members from diverse backgrounds or those who are working with those from underrepresented populations develop into equitable and thoughtful leaders by fostering a deep understanding of the principles of diversity and inclusion.
Drs. Laurel Franklin and Chelsea Ennis Begin Project to Target Psychosocial Functioning Associated with PTSD
Drs. Franklin and Ennis are Site-PIs on “Personalizing Cognitive Processing Therapy with a Case Formulation Approach to Intentionally Target Impairment in Psychosocial Functioning Associated with PTSD” (PI: Tara Galovski). The project compares the relative effectiveness of case-formulation-cognitive processing therapy (CF-CPT) to cognitive processing therapy (CPT) in improving Veterans’ psychosocial functioning quality of life and well-being as well as core PTSD and depression symptoms. It will determine the effectiveness of CF-CPT as compared to CPT in improving Veterans’ treatment engagement; and evaluate CF- CPT’s indirect impact on Veterans’ psychosocial functioning, quality of life, well-being and PTSD/depression as influenced by improvement in the idiosyncratic clinical challenges targeted by the case formulation.
Dr. Gala True Presented at CPG for Suicide Prevention Webinar Series
Dr. True’s team presented on “Partnering with Firearm Retailers to Promote Temporary Out-of-Home Firearm Storage” at the Rocky Mountain MIRECC’s Clinical Practice Guideline for Suicide Prevention Webinar Series in January. The team was joined by one of the community partners on their VISION project, a Veteran and firearm retailer.View Recording
The work of VISION was also highlighted in an article about pending legislation in Louisiana that would remove some of the barriers to firearm retailers partnering on suicide prevention efforts.View Article
Dr. Mary Shapiro Published First-Author Article on Pain and Posttraumatic Stress Among Women with History of Military Sexual Trauma
Dr. Shapiro, a recent hire at our New Orleans anchor site and first author, published the article “Pain and posttraumatic stress: Associations Among Women Veterans with a History of Military Sexual Trauma” in Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice, and Policy. Dr. Shapiro is being trained by Dr. Gala True, who also a co-author along with Drs. Laurel Franklin (Site Leader) and Amanda Raines.Access Article
Last updated: May 19, 2022
In this Issue
— SC MIRECC Welcomes New Co-Director
— Grant Writing Scholars 2022
— 2022 BEST Fellows
— DEI Corner: Adding Pronouns and VHA ODEI Inclusivity Campaign
— DEI Calendar of Events
— Anchor Site Highlights
— New Clinical Eduction Resources
— Publication Highlights
— Pilot Grant Opportunity
— MIDAS Consultation Service
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