Dr. Melissa Johnson, DBH, LPC; Sue Dolence, MSSA, LCSW; Kristin McQueeney, MS, MEd, LPC, NCC; and Crystal McCown, LCSW

Presentation: Opportunities in Pediatric Integration

Presentation Description:

Children’s mental health is a priority for health advocates around the world. We know that if we can promote and improve mental health in childhood, we can disrupt long-term trajectories of poor health outcomes. Mental health promotion in childhood is generally viewed by research and practice as the only viable short-term path to reducing the burden of adult mental disorders. Despite decades of research in this area, innovators in integrating mental health assessment and treatment into routine pediatric care will tell us that it isn’t easy! Financial, operational, and clinical obstacles abound. This panel will share panelists’ experiences in successfully overcoming barriers to integration in pediatrics to advance lifelong mental health promotion and prevention.

Presenter Bios:

Dr. Melissa Johnson, DBH, LPC

Dr. Melissa Johnson is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Arizona and has earned a Doctor of Behavioral Health degree from Arizona State University. She has also received a two-year certificate in Infant Family Clinical Practice from the Harris Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Training Institute.

Dr. Johnson works for El Rio Health, an FQHC specializing in integrated care. Dr. Johnson has worked in primary care pediatrics for over nine years and enjoys collaborating with other doctors to provide comprehensive care. For many years Dr. Johnson was a Clinical Supervisor for various outpatient mental health clinics that serve children and families. She has over two decades of experience providing mental health for patients across the lifespan.

Dr. Johnson has been a faculty associate in the Master of Counseling program at Arizona State University, where she has helped to train and shape the future counselors of America.

Dr. Johnson is the CEO and owner of La Mer Oracle. Dr. Johnson started her spiritual journey about four years ago when she repeatedly began seeing the number 12:34. Through this journey, she has learned the tarot and oracle cards and developed her intuition and other spiritual practices. Currently, Dr. Johnson is working on learning various forms of energy healing. La Mer Oracle was created to provide an opportunity to incorporate these clinical and alternative practices to promote healing, guidance, and support.

Sue Dolence, MSSA, LCSW

Sue Dolence, MSSA, LCSW, has worked in the field of behavioral health for over 23 years. Throughout her career, she has worked with veterans, geriatric patients, adults with serious mental illnesses, patients with chronic pain and in integrated medical settings. Currently, she is the Director of Integrated Behavioral Health Programs at El Rio Health, overseeing the Primary Care Behavioral Health program and the Buena Vida Integrated Pain Clinic. Sue is a strong advocate for integrated health care. She believes you cannot address the true nature of a person’s medical and mental health issues without focusing on the whole person. If we have learned anything from living with Covid-19 and its effects on physical and mental health, prioritizing whole-person care should be essential in all medical settings today.

Kristin McQueeney, MS, MEd, LPC, NCC

Kristin L McQueeney is a DBH Candidate at Cummings Graduate Institute for Behavioral Health Studies and hails from Erie, Pennsylvania. There she works at Family Services of NWPA (FSNWPA) as the Clinical Supervisor of their Outpatient Psychiatric Clinic. Kristin also practicing at FSNWPA as a Licensed Professional Counselor trained in Trauma-Focus Cognitive Behavior Therapy (TF-CBT), Cognitive Progressing Therapy (CPT) and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) when not supervising master-level therapists for licensure hours and exam preparation.

Outside of her work, Kristin has been married to her husband, Kevin, for 27 years. Together they have three grown children and several feline and canine children to keep them busy. During her leisure time, Kristin enjoys mindfully traveling and interacting with family, friends, pets, and nature.

Crystal McCown

Crystal McCown is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She is licensed in AZ, NJ, TX, and as an LMSW in NY. Crystal received her undergraduate degree in Social Work from Brigham Young University and her graduate degree from the University of Houston. She has worked in many types of social work, including jail clinicians, PHP/IOP programs, hospice, and outpatient medical. Her career has been primarily focused in hospitals, medical, and private practice therapy settings. Crystal is also a Certified Intuitive Eating Counselor with a niche in eating disorders. Crystal has worked with clients of all ages, from toddler to deathbed.

Crystal’s preferred therapy modalities include Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (including trauma-focused), Dialectal Behavioral Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, art therapy, play therapy, narrative therapy, group therapy, and psychosocial workshops/camps. Crystal is also a sought-after speaker and enjoys speaking engagements and providing mental health workshops for school districts and church groups.

Crystal currently works at Tanque Verde Pediatrics, where she has created their mental health department and is excited to continue expanding its reach and scope.