*°Plenary: Chronic Cyclical Disaster Model

Grant Brenner, Sander Koyfman, April Naturale, Kathleen Clegg, Curt WestConstitution Hall Rooms 1-3

About: Over the last few decades, the world has seen a stark increase in human-caused and natural disasters, resulting in many areas experiencing multiple disasters at a time. These overlapping disasters impede a community’s ability to recover physically or mentally from one disaster before another one hits, lowering people’s resilience and posttraumatic growth possibilities. This is especially true for high risk communities, such as Black, Indigenous, and Communities of Color, communities with disability, and other marginalized peoples.

Traditional disaster models were created with single disasters in mind, where recovery and growth were obtainable before another disaster hit. While useful, the increase in disasters, plus the extra stressors marginalized communities experience, necessitated a new chronic disaster model.

This Chronic Cyclical Disaster Model is the collaborative effort of multiple agencies and people in psychiatry, public health, and disaster recovery. This entry-level training takes participants through the blueprint and explains how it can be applied by behavioral health professionals, community leaders, first responders, and survivors to better understand their unique behavioral and emotional responses. Specific examples provide the differences between the traditional models of disaster and this new proposal. The speakers run participants through several scenarios to help them understand how to practically apply the blueprint in various communities. Participants leave the session with an understanding of how cyclical disasters and underlying stressors affect behavioral, emotional, psychological, and spiritual well-being, and how to apply this model when responding to disasters.

Learning Objectives

  1. After attending this workshop, attendees will be able to describe the four phases of disaster response.
  2. After attending this workshop, attendees will be able to identify at least one way to have their community achieve adaptive stress regulation.
  3. After attending this workshop, attendees will be able to develop a behavioral health response plan when overlapping disasters occur within their communities.

Continuing Education

1 CE for psychologists (all) and social workers in VA, NY, and DC.
Audience level: Introductory
Agenda: https://app.box.com/s/mtof0id9aqsvabb24bt7esgc1fq5142v


Amy Carol Dominguez

  • Pronouns: she/her/hers
  • Title: Program Director, Crisis Emotional Care Team


Grant Brenner

  • Pronouns: he/him/his
  • Title: Chief Medical Officer
  • Bio: Grant Hilary is board-certified, and a Fellow of both the American Psychiatric Association and the New York Academy of Medicine. He is on faculty at the Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital, former Director of Trauma Service at the William Alanson White Institute and Co-Chair of Vibrant Emotional Health's Crisis and Emotional Care Team Advisory Board, Co-Chair of the Disasters, Trauma and Global Health Committee of the Group for Advancement of Psychiatry, and CEO and Co-Founder of Neighborhood Psychiatry. With Dr. Fara White, Dr. Brenner co-hosts the Doorknob Comments podcast. He is an experienced consultant, lecturer and teacher on subjects including resilience and self-care, psychotherapy theory and practice, trauma and neurobiology, organizational dynamics and disaster mental health. Dr. Brenner has appeared regularly in national media spots addressing a variety of subjects. He is sole author of the popular Psychology Today blog entitled ExperiMentations.

Sander Koyfman

  • Pronouns: he/him/his
  • Title: Chief Medical Officer
  • Bio: Dr. Sander Koyfman is a Psychiatrist with dual Board Certification in General Adult Psychiatry and Addiction Medicine. He is the Chief Medical Officer of Athena Psych - a NYC based clinic startup with focus on government programs, an independent consultant and most recently has served as Clinical Programs Behavioral Health Medical Director at Centene Behavioral Health with specific interest in measurable improvement in quality of care, Value Based Purchasing arrangements and promotion of Integration as a way to address parity and access to care. Prior to Centene he has served in a variety of clinical roles building and restoring services in a number of community settings. He graduated from New York University and completed his medical degree at the State University of New York Downstate Medical Center College of Medicine. He is a graduate of Mount Sinai Hospital Adult Psychiatry Program in New York City.

April Naturale

  • Pronouns: she/her/hers
  • Title: Assistant Vice President of National Programs
  • Bio: Dr. Naturale is a traumatic stress specialist focused on response to disasters and mass violence. She has provided disaster and traumatic stress response training and consultation throughout the U.S. having led the NY mental health response to 9/11/01, the Boston Marathon bombing and responding to 12 of the last mass violence shooting events. Dr. Naturale also helped launch the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and the Disaster Distress Helpline. Internationally, she has trained Psychologists in the Ukraine Military Service, Humanitarian Aid workers for the European Union and helped launch the European Centre of Expertise for Victims of Terrorism. Currently, Dr. Naturale is Vibrant Emotional Health’s AVP for Crisis and Wellness at the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline and was also recently appointed by the U.S. Attorney General’s team of subject matter experts to review the law enforcement response to the May 24, 2022, Uvalde, TX, Robb Elementary school shooting.

Curt West

  • Pronouns: he/him/his
  • Title: Associate Professor of Psychiatry

And special thanks to our other CCDM contributor, Kathleen Clegg, who cannot make the symposium but has been instrumental in its design.

Dr. Clegg is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry and has been involved in clinical service, education and administration in psychiatry throughout her career. Board certified in Psychiatry and Addiction Psychiatry, Dr. Clegg serves as the Director of Ambulatory Psychiatry and Director of Community Psychiatry at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center. For more than 20 years, she has taught in the course “Management of Complex Humanitarian Emergencies: Focus on Children and Families” nationally and internationally. Dr. Clegg serves as Co-Chair of the Trauma, Disaster and Global Mental Health committee of the Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry (GAP).  Dr. Clegg also serves as the Co-Chair of the University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center Trauma Initiative. Special interests include Community Psychiatry, Addiction Psychiatry, Trauma, Compassion Fatigue and Vicarious Trauma, Disaster Psychiatry and Global Mental Health. She is a faculty member at the Gestalt Institute of Cleveland, and has served as a co-chair and faculty member is several workshops and training programs.


There is no conflict of interest or commercial support between any presenter and Vibrant Emotional Health for this program.

Sun 12:00 am - 12:00 am
300 max