SSTI 2021 Impact Report

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Katy Dondanville, PsyD, ABPP Program Director

Brooke Fina, LCSW, BCD Director of Training

CONSULTANTS Abby Blankenship, PhD

Click here to learn more about the team!

Cognitive Processing Therapy

Tabatha Blount, PhD

John Moring, PhD

Prolonged Exposure

Cognitive Processing Therapy and Crisis Response Plan

Maritza Grau-Magat, LCSW Cognitive Processing Therapy in Spanish

Kristi Pruiksma, PhD Cognitive Processing Therapy and Cognitive

Brittany Hall-Clark, PhD

Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia and Nightmares

Prolonged Exposure, Cognitive and Behavioral Therapy for

Casey Straud, PsyD, ABPP

Insomnia and Nightmares

Prolonged Exposure

Hunter Hansen, PsyD, LMFT

Hannah Tyler, PhD, ABPP

Prolonged Exposure

Cognitive Processing Therapy, Crisis Response Plan and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for

Vanessa Jacoby, PhD, ABPP

Insomnia and Nightmares

Cognitive Processing Therapy and Prolonged Exposure



Dina Garcia

Isabella Clemandot

Crystal Mendoza, MA

Program Coordinator

Social Media and

Program Manager

Communications Intern

Jenny Postich Project Coordinator


Vivian Lewicki William Price

Program Coordinator and

Research Assistant

Communications Specialist

"Everybody that I have met through the Training Initiative has always been so caring and feel so genuine...they genuinely want me to be better and to learn."

Since 2017 the STRONG STAR Training Initiative (SSTI) has focused on increased access to evidence-based treatments (EBTs) for PTSD

JUL 2017 Launched in Texas to train

nationwide. Under the leadership of the University of Texas Health

providers across the state

Science Center at San Antonio (also known as UT Health San Antonio), SSTI extends cutting-edge research from the STRONG STAR Consortium in PTSD treatment for military personnel and veterans by providing competency-based training in EBTs to veteran-serving, licensed mental health providers.

FEB 2018 Expanded nationally and trained providers from 24 states

AUG 2018 Formed strategic

Training is conducted in the form of a Learning Community, ensuring clinicians have the education, support, and resources they need to become experts in providing PTSD treatment. SSTI focuses on two

partnerships with managed care stakeholders to increase access to EBTs for PTSD)

primary impacts: (1) increase clinician expertise in EBTs for PTSD, and (2) reduced suffering of individuals with PTSD treated by EBTs for PTSD by SSTI trained clinicians.

SEP 2019 Offered training in Crisis Response Plan (CRP) for

Our ultimate goal is to expand the workforce of licensed mental health providers trained in EBTs so that veterans and everyone in need have access to quality behavioral health care in their communities.

suicide prevention

500 providers trained!

JAN 2020 Conducted first

We’ve grown exponentially as a training program since our inception thanks to the support of our funders and partner agencies. Their collaboration has granted us the opportunity to make a positive impact on the mental health of our nation’s heroes and the continuing education of the clinicians trained through our program. We invite you

large-scale project in organizational consultation

MAR 2020 Held first virtual training in response to the Coronavirus pandemic

to read more about our growth in the last 4-years, the exciting accomplishments we made in 2021 thanks to our generous funders, the Boeing Corporation, the Bob Woodruff Foundation-Qatar Harvey Fund, and the USAA Foundation.

SEP 2020 Offered training in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy - Insomnia & Nightmares (CBT-I&N)

JUL 2021 First SSTI article published

1000 providers trained!

DEC 2021 Hosted 48 Learning Communities to date

"I think the ability to treat trauma is extremely important in counseling,'s imperative that we understand and know ways to do this."


SSTI is committed to providing educational opportunities in quality behavioral health care through our competency-based training model known as a Learning Community. Grant-funded, the SSTI trains any clinician who applies and qualifies for our training program, allowing us to support clinicians in a wide range of settings. Each year we train hundreds of veteran-serving mental

cognitive processing therapy (CPT) and prolonged exposure (PE) therapy. Trainings health providers in frontline PTSD treatments,

were held in-person in major cities including New York City, Seattle, Colorado Springs and Chicago. In response to the Coronavirus pandemic the SSTI successfully transitioned to virtual trainings.

Training Model Informed by evidence from learning collaborative training models, the SSTI model ensures competency-building by including preworkshop reading and webinars, a 2-day training workshop (virtual or in-person), follow-up weekly clinical case consultation support led by a team of expert consultants, an online resource center (Provider Portal) housing EBTs for PTSD implementation resources in assessment and treatment, demonstration videos, webinars, and more, organizational consultation on treatment adoption efforts, and continuing education credits.

Over the years, we observed that increasing overall access to quality behavioral health care in PTSD treatment requires multi-level engagement. Through this observation, we expanded our educational reach beyond clinical training in PE and CPT to include non-clinical providers, care navigators, students entering the field, and other stakeholders, plus clinical training in suicide prevention, insomnia treatment, and substance use.

2-day workshop

Pre-workshop reading and webinars

Continuing Education Credits

Online Provider Portal

Weekly clinical case consultation

Organizational Consultation

"It is such good quality training with really, really skilled trainers and clinicians. At a


price point that's actually affordable, and that whether you're in private practice or an agency, is someting that's really doable."


The STRONG STAR Training Initiative CPT Learning Community has allowed me to help all of my patients, not just my

Our national reputation for providing access to high-

service members and veterans. The

quality training opportunities for veteran-serving

evidence-based results and success

providers has led organizations focused both on

data help me give my patients hope

veterans and other populations to seek out our

they can health from their trauma,

trainings in CPT and PE.

regardless of the type of severity. To support efforts beyond our funded veteranserving program mission, we have trained 474

SSTI Provider

clinicians, including those in Texas Rape Crisis Centers, for-profit and nonprofit behavioral healthcare organizations, Cohens Veterans

PTSD Symptom Change (PCL-5)

Networks, Homebase, Arkansas Building Effective Services for Trauma (ARBEST), and Stop Soldier

To date, we have trained over 1,500 providers and students, and supported over 500 organizations in 38 states across the country. Suicide.






SSTI includes the ability to capture de-identified patient outcomes to evaluate the impact training had on the lives of









Our data show that patients receiving treatment from SSTI providers experienced significant reductions in PTSD and depression severity. providers.

"By session 3 both of my PE clients report feeling 'free' and have noticed improvement within themselves."







Hours of expert clinical consultation in EBTs for PTSD.


Providers trained in 38 states across the nation and countries outside the U.S. (England, Colombia, and Canada). Click here to view our STRONG STAR Provider Network!


"I like that I'm having this experience with people that are from all over the nation, and community care, and nonprofit agencies, and private practices."


Veterans and military


Civilians with PTSD


Veterans and military

333 7,080

personnel with PTSD were educated about EBTs.

were educated about EBTs.

personnel with PTSD initiated EBT.

Civilians with PTSD initiated EBT.

Veterans, military personnel, and civilians have been educated and/or initiated EBTs for PTSD since 2017.

"Veterans want to get their symptoms under control...they want to be able to go to work, they want to be present in their families, they want to be able to go to graduations, and music concerts...These therapies actually allow people to figure out that they can, in fact, do these things."




As part of our commitment to education in quality behavioral health care, we introduced a webinar series

focused on special topics related to EBTs for PTSD. Webinars included "Treating Traumatic Loss Related to PTSD Through PE and CPT in Military Service Members and Veterans," "Domestic Violence 101 and Considerations for EBTs for PTSD" presented by the Genesis Women's Shelter & Support in observance of

Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October, and a Spanish-language webinar, "Tratamientos basados en la evidencia y la población hispana (Evidence-Based Treatments and the Hispanic Population)."

In total,

we hosted over 8 webinars with over 500 providers attending.

PROVIDER PORTAL At the end of summer 2021 we launched a redesign of our Provider Portal. We partnered with a user experience (UX) and user interface design (UI) expert who gathered input from current SSTI clinicians and the team to inform the redesign and improve the experience of providers in our network. New changes and updates include efficient navigation and organization, embedded psychotherapy note templates and session checklists, and a client symptom monitoring graph.

Watch our past webinars and learn more about the Provider Portal here: STRONG STAR Training Initiative (


"They are giving constant learning opportunities, to me it feels like there's a never-ending stream of knowledge."

GRANT AWARDS We are excited to share we were awarded grant funding from the

Bob Woodruff Foundation and the


Boeing Corporation in support of our 2022 Learning Communities in CPT and PE. The Boeing Corporation announced their grant award at the STRONG STAR Consortium's 6th Annual San Antonio Combat PTSD Conference.

Click the photo below to watch the grant award video! The services provided by the STRONG STAR Training Initiative is a shining example of the support that is so necessary to our veterans. These services will take giant steps in addressing the physical and mental health needs of our local veterans.

Jay Galloway San Antonio Site Leader Boeing Global Services

ARTICLES PUBLISHED We published three papers in scientific journals to advance the field's understanding of competency-based training. Our publications examined findings from our training program on education and initiation rates of PTSD treatment, virtual training in EBTs for PTSD, and our first evaluation of our training program.

Click each

article below to read the full article.

"The STRONG STAR Training Initiative is giving the opportunity; it's giving the experience and the knowledge that is needed to grow the field."