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Category: Research & Medical

Today not only kicks off Tourette Syndrome Awareness Month, it is also the first day of our Virtual Conference 2020. There has never been a more important time to make the TAA your charity of choice. We have all experienced many changes over the last several weeks and now, more than ever, we need to come together to ensure the future of the only national organization dedicated to serving the Tourette Syndrome and Tic Disorder community.
It has been nearly six weeks since we all began actively working to flatten the curve, and the TAA has been doing our part by staying home. These last few weeks have been a test on all of us mentally, physically and emotionally, but it has also taught us a lot about our community. Each of you in the Tourette Syndrome and Tic Disorder community embody strength and resilience every single day, pandemic or not. It has also allowed for some of the most productive, collaborative and creative times to develop new and exciting programs and information.
The education and training of future mental health providers is essential in improving the identification, diagnosis, and treatment of people with tics and Tourette Disorder. In this program, graduate students in psychology, social work, and mental health counseling are invited to learn about the etiology, presentation, and symptoms of Tourette Disorder, and the associated emotional, behavioral, and learning challenges.
Dr. Matthew Capriotti and Dr. Christine Conelea discussed and demonstrated the key to providing thoughtful, high-quality CBIT treatment to clients via telehealth. In addition, they provided an overview on teletherapy basics, with specific considerations for providing teletherapy in the context of the COVID-19 crisis. They also demonstrated how to implement CBIT effectively over videoconferencing, commenting on specific adaptations and considerations for telehealth.
At the time of this writing, the CDC recommendation is to cancel or postpone gatherings of 50 or more people for the next eight weeks. The TAA will follow these guidelines and closely monitor updates as they become available. Online and virtual programming will ramp up in the coming days to ensure we remain your best resource during this complicated and confusing time. Please continue to check tourette.org for additional communications and further information. The TAA has closed its physical offices and transitioned to work-from-home through March 27. At that time we will reevaluate best next steps to ensure ongoing mission delivery, the safety of our staff, and the health of the organization. In the meantime, we remain 100% committed to meeting the needs of our community. All managers and staff members of the TAA team are just a phone call or email away. Please visit our staff page to reach staff directly via email with any questions or concerns.
Happy New Year! Looking back on the last decade, we have made significant strides towards greater understanding, awareness and acceptance of Tourette Syndrome and co-occurring conditions. We continue to extend our footprint across the country with more national events including the Funders Breakfast in New York City, new webinars, increased provider education programming and an expanded Centers of Excellence program. 2020 is also monumental as it marks the return of our biennial National Conference.
From all of us at the Tourette Association of America, we wish you a joyous holiday season and a prosperous new year. 2019 was an impactful year, engaging the community with more training, education, events, and other awareness opportunities around the country. We hope to continue to shift public perception and inspire greater acceptance and inclusion for the TS community. This work is only made possible through your support.