AMHCA has mapped out several suggested tracks/itineraries to make it easier for attendees to select their sessions.
*Suggested track sessions are completely optional.
- Addictions, Substance Use and Co-Occurring Disorders Track
Practitioners working in substance use and addictions must be knowledgeable with the distinctive ethics and standards of practice in the treatment of substance abuse and co-occurring disorders. Counselors must be committed to comply with legal, ethical, and practice standards related to this work: e.g. consent to treat, confidentiality; mandated reporting, appropriate treatment facilities; referral relationships; etc. This year at the AMHCA Conference our substance use/addictions track focuses on teens, trauma and substance use, helping difficult clients, complex trauma, building resilience, medical marijuana and more.
Addictions Track PDF
- Child & Adolescent Track
Children and adolescents often present different symptomatic presentations of these disorders compared with adults, requiring specialized knowledge of diagnosis and treatment. Several notable neurodevelopmental conditions emerge during early childhood, including autism and spectrum disorders and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Late adolescence is also the time when major mental disorders such as bipolar disorder and schizophrenia develop, with prodromal symptoms often appearing earlier in adolescence. AMHCA is offering several sessions this year focusing on understanding and treating depression in adolescent males, a mental health perspective on the glamorization of suicide, multi-sensory trauma-focused interventions for elementary school children with developmental disabilities, parenting the rainbow, empowering transgender youths and their families, and mindfulness with teens.
Child & Adolescent Track PDF
- Couples and Family Track
Counselors are required to be knowledgeable with the distinctive ethics and standards of practice in the treatment of families or couples. Counselors must be committed to comply with legal, ethical, and practice standards related to this work: e.g. consent to treat, confidentiality; mandated reporting, appropriate treatment facilities; referral relationships; etc. AMHCA is offering several sessions this year focusing on couples and family topics including gambling disorder and how it affects families, healing from infidelity, empowering transgender youths and their families, building GREAT relationships, and trauma and eating disorders.
Couples and Family Track PDF
- Diversity Track
Mental health counselors have a responsibility to educate themselves about their own biases toward those of different races, creeds identities, orientations, cultures, and physical and mental abilities. They recognize the important need to be competent in regard to cultural diversity and are sensitive to the diversity of varying populations as well as to changes in cultural expectations and values over time. AMHCA is offering several sessions this year focusing on diversity topics including how your heritage informs your values, trauma-focused group therapy protocol for immigrants and refugees, redefining vulnerability, conversations with the trans community to improve services, skills and techniques for bridging cultural differences and much more!
Diversity Track PDF
- Ethics Track
Mental health counselors subscribe to and pledge to abide by a principle code of ethics. They are expected to utilize carefully considered ethical decision-making processes when faced with ethical dilemas, make sound ethical decisions, and utilize ethical behaviors and best practices. AMHCA is offering several sessions this year focusing on ethical topics including how your heritage informs your values, ethical and legal expectations in clinical documentation, strategies to enhance ethical practice, neuroeducation, ethical blogging for counselors, ethical use of social media in counseling, and becoming an effective counselor in geriatrics.
Ethics Track PDF
- Gender Identity and Sexual Identity Track
AMHCA is offering several sessions this year focusing on gender identity topics including a two-part session on moving from shame to pride, and working with LGBTQ+ people of color .
Gender Identity and Sexual Identity Track PDF
- Integrated Care, Practice Issues, and Healthcare Reform Track
AMHCA believes that mental health counseling is at the core of healthy individual. Integrated care models hold promise in addressing many of the challenges facing our health care system. We believe that the clinical and policy expertise that CMHCs possess and can provide will be invaluable to other primary care physicians in developing innovations in integration to improve the nation’s public’s health, with the goal of dramatically reducing the unacceptable high morbidity and mortality rates experienced by Americans with mental illness. This year AMHCA is offering a pre-conference session in integrated care on understanding psychotropic medications (addition ticket required). Breakout sessions in this track focus on disordered eating and body positivity, the performance of mental health counselors integrated care, mental health issues impacting disparate birth outcomes among black women, identifying and treating trauma-induced insomnia.
Integration Suggested Track PDF
- Military and Veterans Issues Track
It is important for mental health counselors to recognize the values and needs of this special population. Counselors can be effective meeting the needs of this population when they are aware of the specific challenges and cultural norms that are a large part of serving in the military. A breakout sessions in this track focuses on the impact of military culture on mental health and substance use.
Military and Veterans Suggested Track PDF
- Neuroscience/Biological Bases of Behavior Track
AMHCA continues to be a leader in promoting our understanding of the role of neuroscience in the training, research, and practice of clinical mental health counseling. In addition to a robust interest network, AMHCA is the first counseling association to establish neuroscience-related standards, publish a special edition and create a special section in our journal, and establish a task force to provide direction on the future of neuroscience in our field. This year AMHCA is offering a pre-conference session in the neuroscience track entitled 'The Neurobiology of Trauma and Its Application to Successful Treatment' (addition ticket required). The breakout sessions focus on what mental health clinicians need to know about the immune system, telemental health counseling for integrated disorder processing, technological therapy in tough times and more!
Neuroscience/Biological Bases of Behavior Track PDF
- Specialized Clinical Assessment Track
Through the use of assessment techniques, both client and counselor can gain an awareness of the unique constellation of traits, qualities, abilities, and characteristics that define each individual as unique. The assessment process considers mental and emotional well-being, physiological health, as well as relationship and contextual concerns. These sessions focus on psychological testing, CBT for OCD, and DSM-5 resources for differential diagnosis.
Specialized Clinical Assessment Suggested Track PDF
- Supervision Track
Clinical supervision is an important part of the mental health treatment process. The purpose is two-fold: to assist the supervisee to provide the best treatment possible, and to provide training to the supervisee. Supervision is also a gatekeeping process to ensure safety to the client, the profession and the supervisee. Supervisors possess a strong working knowledge of evidence based and best practices with clinical theory and interventions and application to the clinical process. Sessions in this track focus on supervision, diversity, and multicultural, foundations of supervision, resources to prevent counselor burnout in the COVID-19 era and more!
Supervision Track PDF
- Technology Assisted Counseling Track
Mental health is adapting to the use of advanced communication technologies and the Internet for delivery of care and care support. By using advanced communication technologies, clinical mental health counselors are able to widen their reach to clients/patients in a cost-effective manner, ameliorating the mal-distribution of specialty care. Sessions in this track focus on technological therapy in tough times, creating community in a virtual training clinic and more!
Technology Assisted Counseling Suggested Track PDF
- Crisis and Trauma Assessment and Treatment Track
Many individuals seek counseling to resolve symptoms associated with traumatic or chronically distressful experiences. Those experiences may include single-episode traumatic events (such as a mugging, assault, tornado, etc.), or complex trauma (sometimes referred to as developmental trauma or poly-victimization) experienced in childhood, adolescence, or adulthood featuring chronic abuse, neglect, or exposure to other harsh adversities. This year AMHCA is offering a pre-conference session in the neuroscience track entitled 'The Neurobiology of Trauma and Its Application to Successful Treatment' (addition ticket required). Breakout sessions in this track focus on moving trauma informed to trauma responsive to trauma specific services, self-compassion for trauma survivors, resilience building during the COVID-19 era, and much more!
Trauma Suggested Track PDF