current and continuing research
Dr. Mikal-Flynn concentration and major areas of research and clinical work:
Course Development: Traumatology; Introduction to Posttraumatic Growth. Completion of a pilot course focused on the individual, vicarious and community’s response to trauma is the curriculum focus. All students involved in the School of Health and Human Services are eligible to take the course. Debriefing of pilot course brought forth information suggesting the need for and Introduction as well as a graduate course. Ongoing development of both tracks is spearheaded by Dr. Mikal-Flynn and Sacramento State University.
Project Rebirth: First Responders Resilience Network: Ongoing involvement with Project Rebirth led to a concentrated effort to create and provide supportive programs for EMTs and First Responders. Guided by Arlington County Fire Department Chief (Ret.), Robert Gray, who noted high levels of significant and troubling issues in this group of professionals, including suicides, is the motivation for this work. There is an ongoing and concerted effort by Metahab and Drs. Mikal-Flynn and Jennifer Gonzales, Project Rebirth, Chief Gray and Drs. Jana Tran and Sam Buser from the Houston Fire Department, to create and implement resiliency training as well as supportive care throughout their career.
The Effectiveness of Metahabilitation Workshops on Resilience and Posttraumatic Growth Completion of a pilot program studying metahabilitation workshops as an adjunct therapy was completed with individuals from an addiction and dependency program, March 2014. Data supported both usefulness and feasibility of the intervention. Further research is designed to identify effectiveness in influencing resilience and a productive outcome for individuals post trauma and crisis. Workshops being studied include individuals with addiction and dependency and oncology patients. It is hoped in the future to include individuals dealing with chronic pain and soldiers returning home from combat. Research is ongoing.
Collateral Trauma; its Impact and Management of Issues.
Families and individuals witnessing and living with the aftermath of trauma and crisis are affected, sometimes profoundly. Essential information has been achieved by studying victims of trauma, identifying a program and system of enhanced recovery for survivors: metahabilitation. The same method of investigation used to identify and address the unique aspects of recovery confronting survivors will be used to investigate individuals close to the crisis and trauma. It is essential to understand their suffering and the life changes brought about by such events. Interviews of family members and support individuals of trauma victims, including those in the original study as well as families of soldiers returning home and individuals who witnessed events at the Boston Marathon, 2013, are currently being conducted. Completion of research and publication of results is scheduled for December 2017.
Metahabilitation Probability Tool (MPT)
Original doctoral investigation identified specific facilitating condition and characteristics of the metahabilitated survivor. Specific aspects that supported and can continue to support resilience and growth post trauma and crisis. Formation and eventual utilization of a probability tool focused on abilities toward enhanced recovery, identified at the onset of the trauma, providing specific and distinctive information supporting the survivor is necessary. Development of such a tool may provide clear recommendations and precise direction regarding therapeutic interventions for survivors. Data is continually being collected.