ACT News Brief Archive

Pascale Jean-Noel delivers Key Note Address at Oregon’s Center of Excellence Annual Statewide ACT Conference

  • 10 July 2019

On June 11th, 2019 Pascale Jean-Noel, Director of Training at the ACT Institute, delivered the Key Note Address at Oregon Center of Excellence annual statewide ACT conference entitled My Positionality and How That Impacts My Seat at the Table.

Over 250 ACT Providers attended this year representing 33 ACT teams in Oregon gathered for a two-day conference in Corvallis, Oregon. Read More

Luis Lopez Supports Clinicians working with Hurricane Maria Survivors in Puerto Rico

  • 2 July 2019

This June Luis Lopez from the ACT Institute was invited to Puerto Rico to train approximately 80 clinicians working with survivors of Hurricane Maria. During this trip, Luis facilitated training sessions at 3 different areas of the island – Mayaguez (west coast), Arecibo (northern region), and Caguas (near the east coast). Clinicians attending the training were psychiatric nurses, social workers, counselors, and psychologists from COSSMA, a non-for-profit agency serving over 27,000 survivors throughout the island.   Read More

A Year in Review: Reflections on our Field Placement at the ACT Institute

Written by. Angelina LaMastra, Yiyin Tang & Kristin Torres

  • 9 May 2019

Over the past year, the ACT Institute had the pleasure of hosting three 2nd year Master of Social Work interns, Angelina LaMastra from Columbia University, and Kristin Torres and Yiyin Tang from New York University. The MSW interns were assigned different tasks based on their area of interests and self-determined learning objectives and were able to gain valuable learning and working experience to help them in their future careers as social work advocates and leaders. The interns would like to take this opportunity to thank the ACT Institute staff and leadership for their guidance and support and reflect on their individual experiences and work here at NYSPI as they prepare to graduate and move forward in the field. Read More

3rd Annual Peer Learning Community Day: ACT MAPS Training

  • 29 April 2019

On Friday April 12, 2019, the ACT Institute hosted an ACT MAPS training and the third annual face-to-face ACT Peer Specialist training. This training has been almost three years in the making since the ACT Institute began organizing the ACT Peer workforce through a process of interviews, gatherings, and the development of a Peer Scope of Practice. The lack of clarity related to the Peer Specialist role on ACT Teams has created a situation where many peer workers find themselves responsible for traditionally clinical tasks without clear training in peer values and practices. There has been a commitment by the ACT Institute to support peer workers on ACT Teams in a way that has fostered a lot of trust, camaraderie and creative visioning towards the future. This gathering was both an opportunity to share experiences as well as a concrete training of peer developed tools and strategies to help bring the benefits of peer support more fully into the ACT model. It represented the continued desire to strengthen and unify the ACT Peer workforce and build stronger connections to the larger peer workforce community in New York City. Read more

The ACT Institute Interviews Spring 2019 Peer-Interns Drew Musa and Ife Samms

“Nothing about us without us”

  • 26 April 2019

We chatted with New York Psychiatric Institute (NYSPI) Spring 2019 interns from Howie the Harp (HTH) Ife Samms and Drew Musa to get their take on the work they have done since starting their internships in February. Drew (left) is a 25-year-old Muay Thai enthusiast from Queens, and Ife (right) is a 26-year-old singer-songwriter from Brooklyn. HTH interns are placed in a three-month internship following a six-month educational program at the advocacy center for people diagnosed with a mental illness. At NYSPI, their time at their internship is divided in half between working directly with patients on a NYSPI’s inpatient-unit and working with the ACT Institute to help support and train Peer Specialists who work on ACT Teams across the state. We asked them a few questions to get a better picture of their experiences working with CPI thus far.  Read More

Attention ACT providers!

  • 16 April 2019

There is a new set of tobacco resources available through the CPI Learning Management System. To access them, login to and click the NYC TCTTAC (Tobacco Training) button on the lower right. 

Tobacco is the #1 cause of death among people diagnosed with a psychiatric illness in the United States (Callaghan et al, 2014). People diagnosed with a psychiatric illness are more likely to smoke than people without (36% vs. 21%) (CDC Vital Signs February 2013) and smoke more often (SAMHSA CBHSQ Report March 2017). It has also been shown that people diagnosed with a psychiatric illness want to and are able to stop smoking (CDC Vital Signs February 2013). And we can help! In fact, people are the most successful when they receive a combination of psychosocial support and medication, including NRTs, varenicline, and bupropion (2008 PHS Guideline Update). The resources available here speak to the importance of addressing tobacco and describe the most up-to-date evidence-based practices available for counselors as well prescribing clinicians.   Read More

ACT MAPS Training for Peer Specialists


  • 14 March 2019

Exciting things are happening at the ACT Institute with the Peer role and we invite you to be involved! Come join us on April 12th for an In-Person Training/ACT Peer Gathering. THIS WILL BE OUR THIRD ANNUAL GET TOGETHER OF THE PEER COMMUNITY!

On February 1st, the ACT Institute kicked off our first training of ACT MAPS a tool developed to train Peer Specialists explicitly on ACT Teams based on creative mutual aid practices in the greater Peer support community. Aligning with OMH guidelines for Person-Centered Treatment Planning, ACT MAPS aims to provide support in facilitating conversations about ACT participants’ needs and life goals throughout their recovery journey.   Read More

ACT Institute works with DHS Leadership

  • 7 March 2019

On Thursday, February 7th, the ACT Institute met with some of the directors and supervisors of NYC homeless shelters. The ACT Institute facilitated an ACT CORE Training. This training, conducted at the NYS Psychiatric Institute, was attended by 30 staff members from DHS, as well as leadership from NYS OMH and NYC DOHMH. Thistraining, historically provided to ACT Team’s only, covered topics in the areas of (ACT) history and model, recovery, trauma-informed care, multicultural humility and awareness, peer services, person-centered approaches, and engagement. Every member of the ACT Institute was present and led a part of the training. The members of the ACT Institute include Dr. Helle Thorning, Pascale Jean-Noel, Noah Lipton, Sascha DuBrul, Ife Samms, Yiyin Tang, Drew Musa and Luis Lopez. Also, we want to thank Gary Clark, Laura Dreher, Dr. Raj Chablani, and Darryl Nicholson-Sansani for their ongoing support.  Read More

ACT in 2019

  • 11 February 2019

As we move into the new year, we want to welcome practitioners new to working on Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) and congratulate all of you who have been working on ACT teams for some time. In New York State, we now have 108 ACT Teams that serve close to seven thousand of our most vulnerable New Yorkers challenged with significant behavioral health conditions. ACT is an evidence-based practice that has effective outcomes in assisting people on their road to recovery. Accordingly, it is a highly valued service and in great demand.  Read More


  • 14 November 2018

The ACT Institute and New York State Office of Mental Health (OMH) were pleased to present the first annual ACT Symposium 2018 on October 18th and 19th, 2018 in Ellenville, New York. The conference focused on integrated care in an era of systems transformation and through the lens of the ACT model. ACT team members and administrators from OMH came from all over New York State to attend and present. There was even representation from the West Coast, with staff from the Oregon Center of Excellence for Assertive

Community Treatment (OCEACT) traveling in to join the Symposium.  Read More


Theme picker


© 2020 Center for Practice Innovations