Welcome to the Mental Health Module

In Module 3, participants will learn about several mental health disorders and review topics related to dual diagnosis of brain injury and mental illness. This module will also include potential treatment options for these individuals and support strategies for caregivers.

Module 3 Objectives

After completing this module, you will have acquired knowledge about:

  • Definition of mental illness
  • What a co-occurring mental illness and brain injury looks like
  • Brain anatomy and mental illness
  • The cycle of mental illness, violence, and brain injury
  • Treatment of brain injury and mental illness

About the Author

At the time of initial publication, module content was provided by Nicole Stevens, LICSW. In 2023, this course content was revised by Dr. Brie Insalaco and Denise Permatteo. The course content was updated to reflect current data, research, language, and best practices of the field.

Nicole Stevens, LICSW after graduating from the University of Connecticut in 1988, moved to San Francisco where she worked as a social worker. In 1995 she received a master’s degree in Social Welfare from The University of California at Berkeley. After receiving a license to practice Clinical Social Work she opened a psychotherapy practice in San Francisco. In 2003 she moved to Northampton, Massachusetts where she continued a private practice specializing in transitional youth age 18 to 24, women who are experiencing postpartum depression and anxiety, and adults with brain injury. She has worked as a clinical consultant with the Statewide Head Injury Program since 2003.

Denise Permatteo, LICSW is a licensed individual clinical social worker (LICSW) who has been practicing in the area of adult mental health for over 15 years. Her background includes providing care as a medical social worker for several Boston area teaching hospitals, a consultant to long-term care facilities & adult day health programs & mental health treatment provider for community agencies in outpatient & psychiatric emergency services. In addition, she previously ran a private practice providing cognitive behavioral therapy and supportive counseling. Currently, she works as the senior clinician-mental health clinical consultant for Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission’s MFP Waiver and SHIP programs.

Dr. Brie Insalaco is the Clinical Director and consulting neuropsychologist for the ABI/MFP Waiver and Statewide Head Injury Programs of the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission. As part of this role, Dr. Insalaco oversees an interdisciplinary team of medical consultants and provides clinical consultation for individuals with brain injuries and co-occurring medical and behavioral health conditions. She is also responsible for curriculum development for brain injury trainings to both state agencies and the public. Dr. Insalaco obtained her doctoral degree at Fairleigh Dickinson University and subsequently completed her internship and fellowship through the VA Boston Healthcare System/Harvard Medical School with dual specialization in geriatric neuropsychology and polytrauma services including TBI and PTSD. Specialty areas include sports concussions, stroke and vascular conditions, neurocognitive disorders and dual diagnoses including brain injury and behavioral health conditions.