- The primary goal of this NCI-funded research education program is to evaluate the effectiveness of a course designed to train providers in how to work sensitively with sexual violence survivors undergoing cancer care. Research shows that for sexual violence survivors, cancer care procedures can be triggering and retraumatizing due to perceived similarities to the original abuse (e.g., both involve features like undressing and touch). This Sensitive Practice Training (SPT) program will provide healthcare professionals with the skills they need to help sexual violence survivors to feel as safe and comfortable as possible during cancer care.
- Additionally, we want to understand how satisfied cancer care providers are with the SPT course, how effective SPT is in increasing trainees’ sensitive practice skills and knowledge, how effective SPT is in helping providers feel confident in their ability to work sensitively with sexual violence survivors, and to see how SPT affects providers’ real-world practice. To accomplish these goals, we will ask trainees to complete evaluation materials throughout their participation in the SPT program.
- The program is suitable for providers including (but not limited to) radiation and radiology technologists, nurses, advanced practice providers, allied healthcare providers, integrative care providers (e.g., massage therapists, acupuncturists), psychosocial care providers, and physicians.
- No previous training in working with sexual violence or trauma is necessary. All who are interested are welcome!
- For more details on the course, including program faculty, course content and materials, workshops, and FAQs, please review the tabs above.
- The course is free of charge.
- Continuing Education credits are available for disciplines including (but not limited to): physicians (ACCME), psychologists (APA), radiology and radiation oncology technologists (ASRT), social workers (ASWB), nurses (ANCC), and physical therapists (APTA).
Online Content Level: Beginning
In support of improving patient care, this activity has been planned and implemented by Amedco LLC and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Amedco LLC is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.
Credit Designation Statement – Amedco LLC designates this recorded-online activity for a maximum of 6.25 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditsTM for physicians and 6.25 contact hours for nurses. Learners should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.
This course is co-sponsored by Amedco and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Amedco is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Amedco maintains responsibility for this program and its content. 6.25 hours.
The following state boards accept courses from APA providers for Counselors: AK, AL, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, HI, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, MD, ME, MO, NC, ND, NH, NE, NJ, NM, NV, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, WI, WY
MI: No CE requirements
The following state boards accept courses from APA providers for MFTs: AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, IA, ID, IN, KS, MD, ME, MO, NE, NC, NH, NJ, NM, NV, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, WA, WI, WY
The following state boards accept courses from APA providers for Addictions Professionals: AK, AR, CO, CT, DC, DE, GA, IA, IN, KS, LA, MD, MO, MT, NC, ND, NE, NJ, NM, NY (outstate held)*, OK, OR, SC, UT, WA, WI, WY
MA/MFTs: Participants can self-submit courses not approved by the MAMFT board for review.
The following state boards accept courses from APA providers for Social Workers: AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, DE, FL, GA, ID, IN, KY, ME, MN, MO, NE, NH, NM, OR, PA, VT, WI, WY
* If the activity is held live in the state of NY, then direct addictions board is required, ie: NAADAC. If the activity is held outside NY, is virtual, enduring or remote, it is considered "outstate" and this reciprocity applies.
As a Jointly Accredited Organization, Amedco is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved under this program. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. Amedco maintains responsibility for this course. Social workers completing this course receive 5.25 continuing education credits.
The following state boards accept courses offering ASWB ACE credit for Social Workers: AK, AL, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, HI, ID, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, MT, NC, ND, NE, NH, NM, NV, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, WA, WI, WV, WY
* WV accepts ASWB ACE unless activity is in live in West Virginia then an application is required.
The following state boards accept courses offering ASWB ACE credit for Counselors: AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, MA, MD, ME, MO, ND, NE, NM, NH, NV, OK, PA, TN, TX, UT, VA, WI, WY
AL/Counselors: Activities not providing NBCC approval may be approved by the Board for individual licensees upon receipt of acceptable documentation prior to the activity. Please send course details to your licensing board for approval BEFORE the event. No approvals afterward by the board.
The following state boards accept courses offering ASWB ACE credit for MFTs: AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, FL, IA, ID, IN, KS, MD, ME, MO, NC, NE, NH, NM, NV, OK, PA, RI, TN, TX, UT, VA, WI, WY
MA / MFTs: Participants can self-submit courses not approved by the MAMFT board for review.
The following state boards accept courses offering ASWB ACE credit for Addictions Professionals: AK, CA, CO, CT, GA, IA, IN, KS, LA, MO, MT, ND, NM, NV, OK, OR, SC, WA, WI, WV, WY
New York Board for Social Workers
Amedco SW CPE 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, #0115. 6.25 hours.
American Society of Radiologic Technologists
This activity has been approved by ASRT for 6 Category A continuing education credits. Reference Number: MNZ0010013. Expiration 10/1/2023.
New Jersey Social Workers
Sensitive Practice Training, Course #3324, is approved by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program to be offered by Amedco, LLC. as an individual course. Individual courses, not providers, are approved at the course level. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. ACE course approval period: 05/20/2021 – 05/20/2023. Social workers completing this course receive 5.25 General Social Work Practice continuing education credits.
Notice to providers of New Jersey SW Continuing Education:
- ACE individual course approval meets the NJ Board of Social Work Examiners requirements for individual course approval pursuant to NJ Code 13:44G-6.4.16.
New York Board for Psychology
Amedco is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Psychology as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed psychologists #PSY-0031. 6.25 hours.
Dr. Schnur is an Associate Professor in the Department of Population Health Science & Policy (with a secondary appointment in Psychiatry), a Member of the Center for Behavioral Oncology, and the Co-Director of the Integrative Behavioral Medicine Program at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Additionally, Dr. Schnur is a licensed clinical psychologist, and delivers psychotherapy to women with breast cancer at Mount Sinai’s Dubin Breast Center. Dr. Schnur's research is focused on understanding the intersection between sexual violence and patients’ experiences of cancer care. Her work has received national recognition in the form of a Mid-Career Investigator Award from the Violence and Trauma Special Interest Group of the Society of Behavioral Medicine, and grant funding from the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society. Dr. Schnur is the director of this SPT program, and she is honored to be able to work with you on helping sexual violence survivors across the country to feel safe and supported during the stresses of cancer screening and treatment.
Dr. Goldsmith Turow is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (Center for Behavioral Oncology, Department of Population Health Science & Policy), is Adjunct Faculty in the Psychology Department at Seattle University, and is a Clinical Associate and licensed clinical psychologist at Seattle Psychology. In her clinical work, she has provided a range of treatments for trauma and related challenges, including “Self-Talk” therapy groups that integrate lovingkindness meditation and cognitive behavioral skills to transform self-criticism into self-encouragement. In her academic work, she is a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Trauma and Dissociation, a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation, and a founding member of the American Psychological Association’s Division of Trauma Psychology. She has published for scientific and lay audiences on trauma and sexual violence, and is a national and international speaker on topics including posttraumatic stress and coping with chronic illness. Her most recent book is Mindfulness Skills for Trauma and PTSD: Practices for Recovery and Resilience (Norton Professional Books). She has expertise in psycho-oncology as well, having completed her postdoctoral fellowship in Cancer Prevention and Control at Mount Sinai. Dr. Goldsmith Turow is looking forward to sharing her expertise with you during this course
Dr. Montgomery is a licensed clinical psychologist and a nationally recognized leader in health psychology, with a focus on developing and testing behavioral interventions to improve patients’ experiences of cancer care. He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, and has held national offices in professional organizations including the American Psychological Association and the Society for Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis. At the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Dr. Montgomery holds several titles including – Director of the Center for Behavioral Oncology, Professor (Department of Population Health Science and Policy & Psychiatry), Director of Psychological Services at the Dubin Breast Center, and Director of the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs (Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences). Dr. Montgomery has expertise in studying patients’ experiences of cancer and its treatment, and his program of research has focused on empowering patients with the tools they need to improve their experience of cancer care.
Ms. Starrs is the Assistant Clinical Supervisor for the Mount Sinai Health System’s Department of Radiation Oncology. She took her first management position in this department in 2010 as Assistant Chief Therapist, and since then she has been responsible for the safe and accurate delivery of radiation therapy treatment to over 100 patients per day. Ms. Starrs contributed to the development, and was responsible for the implementation, of a tablet-based Sensitive Practice Tool in the breast radiotherapy setting. Administering this tool to all new breast radiotherapy patients has now become standard care, and she has seen the benefits to both patients and providers. In 2018, Ms. Starrs delivered a presentation entitled “Individualized Care for Survivors of Abuse” at the American Society of Radiologic Technologists national conference. She is enthusiastic about disseminating information on sensitive practice to cancer care providers across the nation.
Mr. Minassian is a Senior Radiation Therapist in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Mount Sinai Hospital, as well as a Co-Instructor (Clinical Set-Ups: Breast) at the Mount Sinai Center for Radiation Therapy Education. Mr. Minassian is deeply committed to delivering sensitive practice, and to training others in those skills. For several years now, he has been administering the sensitive practice tool to breast radiotherapy patients, and working with patients to develop unique and personalized sensitive practice care plans. He is pleased to have the opportunity to share his knowledge and experiences with the course trainees.
Dr. Taylor is a board certified clinical psychologist, and a specialist in stress, trauma, substance use and addictions. Dr. Taylor has extensive experience working with patients in a variety of settings, including hospitals, VA medical centers, residential treatment programs, and private practice. She has experience and expertise in facilitating behavior change and improving self-management and adaptive coping in people with conditions related to stress, pain, addiction, and other challenges. In all of these settings, she has seen firsthand the impact that past trauma can have on a person’s current experience and well-being. She received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Rutgers University, and an MA in Journalism and Communications from New York University. She has extensive experience treating patients and training clinicians in the intersection of trauma and healthcare, and is glad to share her expertise with the SPT trainees.
Dr. Schachter authored the “Handbook on Sensitive Practice for Health Care Practitioners: Lessons from Adult Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse,” which is the primary textbook for the SPT course. She received her physical therapy training at the University of Saskatchewan, a Master of Human Kinetics at the University of Windsor, and a doctorate at the University of Western Ontario. She is currently an adjunct professor at the School of Physical Therapy at the University of Saskatchewan. Her interest in sensitive practice for SV survivors arose from her work as an activist volunteer in sexual assault centers in Canada. She was the principal investigator of the Sensitive Practice Project, a multi-disciplinary, multi-phased project aimed at generating research-based guidelines on trauma-informed sensitive practice to assist healthcare providers to work more effectively with adult survivors of sexual violence. Over the course of her career, she has presented information on sensitive practice internationally to diverse healthcare audiences, from physicians to dental hygienists, teachers to mental health professionals. Dr. Schachter is keenly interested in ways that a sensitive practice approach can be integrated into healthcare education to foster better experiences for adult survivors of sexual violence in healthcare settings.
Why focus on sexual violence survivors with cancer?
- Every 73 seconds, someone in the United States is sexually assaulted.
- 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men in the United States have experiences sexual violence involving physical contact during their lifetimes.
- Approximately 1 in 5 women and 1 in 38 men have experienced completed or attempted rape.
- Approximately 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 13 boys have experienced child sexual abuse at some point in their lifetimes.
- Approximately 1 in 2 men and 1 in 3 women will develop cancer over their lifetimes.
- Evidence suggests that sexual violence survivors may have higher rates of cancer risk factors or lower rates of cancer screening.
Why learn sensitive practice skills for cancer care?
- For sexual violence survivors, aspects of cancer treatment (e.g., undressing, exposure, touch) can remind them of the original violence, and as such cancer care can be triggering, distressing, and anxiety-provoking.
- Sexual violence survivors can be more likely to avoid or have difficulty adhering to healthcare.
- The National Comprehensive Cancer Network recognizes that individuals with a history of sexual violence are more likely to become distressed during cancer care.
- The American Medical Association, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the Department of Veterans Affairs, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the Institute of Medicine all recommend that healthcare providers address sexual violence in a sensitive way to help patients avoid or minimize identifiable triggers, and in turn, to reduce healthcare-related distress and retraumatization.
By the end of this training program, providers should be able to: 1) Describe and define sensitive practice techniques; 2) Identify the importance of applying sensitive practice techniques with sexual violence survivors in cancer care; and, 3) Demonstrate the ability to skillfully use sensitive practice techniques through scenario-based learning
Module 1: Background on Sexual Violence. In this module, Dr. Goldsmith Turow will discuss the prevalence of sexual violence in the United States, and introduce how sexual violence and cancer intersect.Module 1 Learning Objectives
Module 2: Principles of Sensitive Practice. There are nine principles underlying sensitive practice for healthcare providers working with sexual violence survivors. Together, these principles are conceptualized as forming an “Umbrella of Safety.” In this module, Dr. Montgomery will discuss the principles, and Dr. Schachter will discuss their origin.Module 2 Learning Objectives
Module 3: Potentially Difficult, Uncomfortable, or Triggering Aspects of Cancer Care. Many aspects of cancer care (e.g., undressing, touch, exposure) can remind survivors of the original sexual violence. In this module, Ms. Starrs and Mr. Minassian will describe potential triggers during cancer care, and illustrate with a radiotherapy example.Module 3 Learning Objectives
Module 4: Triggering, Dissociation, and Grounding. In this module, Dr. Goldsmith Turow will further discuss triggering, will introduce the concept of dissociation, will discuss how dissociative experiences may influence patients during cancer care, and will demonstrate grounding techniques to help patients anchor themselves in the here and now.Module 4 Learning Objectives
Module 5: Sensitive Practice Communication Skills. In this module, Dr. Taylor will discuss skills that providers can use to identify patients’ treatment preferences, to manage emotionally charged situations, and to help sexual violence survivors feel safe and as comfortable as possible during cancer care. These skills include: ongoing informed consent, task-specific inquiry, and the S-A-V-E the Situation strategy.Module 5 Learning Objectives
Module 6: Talking with Patients about Sexual Violence. In this module, Dr. Goldsmith Turow will discuss how and when to ask patients about a history of sexual violence, and how to respond sensitively and effectively if patients do disclose sexual violence history during cancer care.Module 6 Learning Objectives
The SPT program begins with a self-paced E-Learning component. Follow-up training will be designed based on trainee input and public health guidelines.
- The E-Learning component has six modules taught by our expert faculty. These modules are titled: Background on Sexual Violence; Principles of Sensitive Practice; Potentially Difficult, Uncomfortable, or Triggering Aspects of Cancer Care; Triggering, Dissociation, and Grounding; Sensitive Practice Communication Skills; and Talking with Patients about Sexual Violence.
- Each module includes video lectures, podcasts, active learning activities, reflection questions, and enrichment materials.
- The E-Learning portion is self-paced, so you can take your time, and complete each module at the time and place that's most convenient for you.
Follow-up Training Possibilities
- As trainees complete and pass the E-Learning portion of the course, we'll be asking for your input on next training steps, and want to hear more about what would meet your training needs and what format would best fit you and your lifestyle during these uncertain times. All decisions about follow-up training offerings will be informed by trainee input and public health guidelines.
Continuing Education Credits
- We will offer continuing education credits for participating in SPT.
- Continuing education credits will be offered for disciplines including (but not limited to): physicians (ACCME), psychologists (APA), radiology and radiation oncology technologists (ASRT), social workers (ASWB), nurses (ANCC), and physical therapists (APTA).
- Throughout the training program, and at three months after your participation, we’ll ask you to provide us with feedback on your thoughts and feelings about the course, and on your use of sensitive practice skills in your cancer care practice.
- Post-course feedback assessments are brief and online.
- Your feedback will help us to improve and refine the course, and will shape future dissemination of the SPT program.
1. How long will it take to complete the online course?
Each of the six modules should take approximately one hour to complete, and the post-course evaluation should take less than 20 minutes.
2. Do I have to complete each module in a single sitting? Or can I take my time?
Please go at your own pace! You can stop and start the online course whenever you want. Your progress through the course will be saved, so you’ll know where you left off.
3. Is there a charge or fee to take the course?
No, you will not be charged for taking the course. There is no charge.
4. Will I be reimbursed for my participation in the training program?
No, we cannot reimburse you for course participation or evaluation completion.
5. Do I need to be online at specific times?
No, you do not have to be online at specific times. You can access the course whenever and wherever it is convenient for you.
6. What equipment do I need?
An internet connection and an internet browser such as Safari, Firefox, or Chrome.
7. Are there eligibility requirements in order to register?
Yes. Participants in the training program must: 1) be licensed or license-eligible cancer care providers, or students currently enrolled in an accredited healthcare provider training program and who plan to work in cancer settings in the future, AND, 2) have an interest in learning more about sensitive practice with sexual violence survivors. No prior training in working with trauma survivors is required.
8. How do I access the SPT website?
Once we confirm your eligibility, we will send you an email with all the information you will need to log into the course website.
9. Is technical support available?
Yes. Our SPT team is typically available 9:00AM to 5:00PM Eastern Standard Time on business days. We will try our best to get back to you as quickly as possible, typically within 72 hours.
10. If I have problems logging into the course, what should I do?
Please contact the SPT staff using the phone number or email address on the 'Contact Us' tab and we will assist you.