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Treating Traumatic Stress During the COVID 19 Crisis using Tele-mental Health

July 13 @ 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm

2-hour Webinar

Treating Traumatic Stress During the COVID 19 Crisis using Tele-mental Health

Lois A. Ehrmann PhD, LPC, NCC/ACS, CTTS


DATE:           Monday, July 13, 2020 

TIME:           1:00 PM–3:00 PM EDT


FEE:  $80 (early bird prior to July 1, $70)

Includes technical support, handouts,  and Continuing Education credits

Registration is limited and on a first-come-first-served basis


Program Description:

This 2 hour webinar was developed for professional mental health providers who have found themselves having to adapt quickly in providing tele-mental health services during the current pandemic. The first 30 to 40 minutes will be spent on how the pandemic may have impacted the professional helper and then the remainder of the webinar will present specific information about the needs of clients during a pandemic as well as the best strategies identified in current literature that could be helpful to clients. A special focus will be on adapting strategies to the tele-mental health platform. Numerous resources will be identified and the sources of those resources will also be provided.


Which topics will be discussed?

  • Naming the Storm: The obvious reality:
    •  Pandemic
    • personal impacts
    • Threat of health and life
    • Social distancing, sheltering in place and loss of work
    • Bereavement
    • Review of parasympathetic breathing coming out of Polyvagal research and theory….
    • What do we do to support our colleagues, employees, supervisees and clients???
    • Organization Wise….We have to Adapt
    • CDC guidelines for stemming the infection of COVID-19 early on…
  • Training clinical staff in tele-mental health services.
    • Communication in Reducing Stress in the Organization
    • Leadership
    • Avoid Defensive Routines
  • Finding the External Resources to Help in the Adaptation Process
  • Become the resource Guru and
  • Share resources generously as they become known to employees of your own organization but to others as well!
  • Finding the Calm
    • Personally first:
    • Employees, supervisees and colleagues.
    • Clients
  • Why COVID-19 Pandemic is a Traumatic Event for Our Trauma Clients
  • Qualifier: COVID-19 is a stressor for all of us
    • Threat of death to self, children, neighbors, loved ones
    • Psychological distress that can last months after the disaster abates
    • Why COVID-19 Pandemic is a Traumatic Event for Our Trauma Clients Continued
    • Media presentation and coverage of the pandemic (Garfin, Silver, Holman 2020)
    • Immune system response to stress
    • Loss of face to face professional help making
  • Tele-mental health essential and critical
  • The sudden adjustment and need for this during this crises has resulted in increased stress not only for clients but for the professional helpers trying to continue their services and support for their clients.
  • Working Through Past Trauma Events and Now the Trauma of COVID-19
  • Disorders found after disasters including pandemics range from adjustment disorders, acute stress reactions, anxiety, phobias, on up to severe anxiety disorders, major depression and of course full blown PTSD
  • Suicidal ideation and suicide risks have been shown to increase during infectious disease outbreaks and pandemics (Tucci et. al, 2017)
  • So Immediately We Need to
  • Use our Tele-mental health platforms to check with our clients:
    • Are your basic needs being met?
    • Violence
    • Children
    • Older Adults
  • Markers to check for signs of traumatic stress
  • Nurses, Doctors, Health Care Workers, First Responders Directly Fighting the Virus
  • A significant percentage will experience PTSD and the psychosocial implications including confusion, anger, as well as stigma from communities upon returning home. (Tucci et. al., 2017)
  • Pregnant women. Post Partum Mothers, Mothers and Young Children
  • Zotti, Williams, Wako et. al. (2015): Many indicators of struggles but biggest for current crises is safe access to health care including mental health and support network.
  • Children had delays in development including language delays.
  • Adapting Tele-Mental Health to Provide Successful Strategies from Past Pandemics/Disasters
  • Traumatic Stress in the Rest of Us
  • Sprang & Silman (2015):
    • Promote strategies that build on strengths and existing capabilities and treat psychopathological issues should they arise
    • Help parents to help their children by focusing on their parenting strengths and knowledge
    • Listen, Protect, and Connect (part of Psychological First Aid) available through the Trans-World Network of the American Psychological Association has special helpful tools for parents to help their children
    • Lieberman et. al. (2019)
    • Help adults identify their personal strengths and although difficult point out the moments of success to build upon
    • Look for and accentuate themes of success showing internal locus of control, commitment to self, optimism, supporting others, self-reliance, self-care
    • Help reduce isolation by helping individuals connect and network in ways that are possible during the crises
  • Tele-Mental Health as Part of the Overall Disaster Management Plan
    • Khorram-Manesh et. al. (2016): essential element in any type of disaster and must be fully integrated with all other essential interventions.
    • Sprang & Silman (2015); Tucci et. al. (2017); Lieberman et.al. (2019)
    • Restore the affected populations’ basic services and security/Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs
    • Strengthen the family and community networks;
    • Build resilience in individuals and communities
    • Provide psychosocial support to distressed individuals (infected persons and family members) during the stages of the illness: testing periods; actual illness if possible; post illness into recovery
    • Specialized mental health intervention for severely affected survivors such as traumatic grief/bereavement interventions and directed PTSD interventions
  • Helping Nurses, Doctors, Health Care Workers & First Responders
    • Psychological First Aid
      • Safety and comfort
        • Give these survivors as much choice as possible in terms of phone, chat, videoconferencing, encrypted email etc.
      • Stabilization
      • Information gathering re/needs and current concerns
      • Practical assistance
      • Connection with social supports
      • Information on coping
      • Linkage with local services
    • Pregnant Women, Post Partum Women and Women with Young Children
    • Nishihara et.al. (2019):
      • Connecting mothers to each other for support and guidance in all areas of concern to these populations has been found to be helpful but these were disasters where social distancing was not a factor….
    • Pregnant Women, Post Partum Women and Women with Young Children Continued
    • Vulnerable Older Adults


  • Resources on Psychological First Aid

Working with difficult to engage clients can be frustrating and challenging, even for seasoned clinicians. The challenge of working with younger clients in therapy can be further compounded by their fear of entering therapy, their lack of control over the decision to attend therapy, their feeling of being scapegoated for family problems, their lack of motivation for treatment, and their developmental capacity which can make it difficult for them to respond to traditional talk-therapy.



Learning objectives:

    • Explore at least two factors that contribute to the fight, flight, freeze trauma response. happening during the pandemic crisis.
    • Familiarize themselves with at least three communication strategies and three leadership strategies that are helpful in minimizing trauma’s effects for their colleagues, employees and clients..
    • Identify at least three factors contributing to traumatic stress in individuals in the USA as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic crises.
    • Evaluate the data of at least three highly vulnerable groups of people susceptible to the effects of trauma during the COVID-19 pandemic and matched at least two resources or strategies that can be adapted to the essential use of Tele-mental Health for each group that can reduce traumatic stress.


 Meet the Instructor:

Lois Pessolano-Ehrmann PhD, LPC, NCC, DCC has been working in the mental health field for over 35 years. Her specialty areas include trauma and attachment struggles in children, adolescents and adults. She has worked intensively with adoption and issues of pre-natal fetal alcohol exposure.  In the last 10 years, Lois has extensively studied the art of holistic healing in regard to trauma through the use of EMDR and the Internal Family Systems Model as well as other methodologies that incorporate the body, mind and spirit. She has also been formally trained to provide Telemental Health/counseling via the internet or phone. 

For further information and an opportunity to see Lois’ published books, please visit her WEBSITE.


CE Information:

Continuing Education Credit (2) is pending through Commonwealth Educational Seminars for the following professions:  Psychologists, Social workers, Mental Health Counselors, and LMFTs. It is the participant’s responsibility to check with their individual state boards to verify CE requirements for their state.


Commonwealth Educational Seminars is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Commonwealth Educational Seminars maintains responsibility for these programs and their content.


Social Workers:

Commonwealth Educational Seminars (CES) is entitled to award continuing education credit for Social Workers. Please visit CES CE CREDIT to see all states that are covered for Social Workers. CES maintains responsibility for this program and its content.


Commonwealth Educational Seminars is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers. #SW-0444.


Bibliography :

Comfort, L., Yeo, J. & Scheinert, S. (2019). Organizational adaptation under stress: Tracing communication processes in four California county health departments during the H1N1      threat, April 28, 2009, to March 11, 2011. American Review of Public Americans, 49(2), 159-173.

Corcoran, C. (2020) Use of Psychological First Aid for Nurses. Nursing Economics, 38(1): 26-32.

Garfin, D., Silver, R. & Holman, E. (2020).The novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak: Amplification Of Public Health Consequences by Media Exposure. Health Psychology. Advance online publication. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/hea0000875.

Lieberman et.al. (2019). “We All Have Strengths”: A retrospective qualitative evaluation of a resilience training for Latino immigrants in Philadelphia, PA. Health Equity, 3.1: 548-556.

McClelland  et.al.(2016). Psychological and physical impacts of extreme events on older adults:   Implications for communications. Society for Disaster Medicine and Public Health, 11(1): 127- 134.


Target audience:  Mental Health & Associated Professionals,

Level:  Intermediate

Application Deadline

July 12, 2020 or until all training spaces are filled, whichever comes first.

 Notification of Acceptance

 Applicants will be notified, via email, of acceptance when registration is complete and payment is received.

Refund/Cancellation Policy 

Tuition/registration payments are refundable (minus $20) until July 1st, 2020. Cancellations after this date are non-refundable but registrant will be entitled to a credit towards a future training.  In this situation, we will attempt to find someone to take your slot (based on our waiting list).


Webinar workshops are accessible to all. For further information, please contact:  nachasconsulting@gmail.com or 917-862-2427

Grievance Policy

Nachas Consulting seeks to ensure equitable treatment of every person and to make every attempt to resolve grievances in a fair manner. Please submit a written grievance to nachasconsulting@gmail.com or 917-862-2427. Grievances will receive, to the best of our ability, corrective action in order to prevent further problems.

Accommodations for the disabled.

Webinar workshops accommodate the disabled. For further information, please contact:  nachasconsulting@gmail.com or 917-862-2427


Treating Trauma COVID19

  • Price: $70.00
  • $0.00









July 13
1:00 pm - 3:00 pm


Online Webinar, United States