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Behavioral Medicine is an interdisciplinary field of healthcare. It is concerned with the development, and integration of psycho-social, behavioral and bio-medical knowledge relevant to health and illness. Behavioral medicine practice focuses on how people’s thoughts and behavior affect both their emotional and their physical health.
The Behavioral Medicine Institute (BMI), based in Knoxville, Tennessee, is a group of practitioners specializing in the application of the Biopsychosocial Model of health and disease. We provide evaluation and treatment of the psychological aspects of physical disorders and of stress-related disorders. BMI clinicians also treat the full range of general mental health disorders. The group includes psychologists, clinical social workers, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, and licensed professional counselors. It was founded in 1990. We offer empirically-validated assessments and treatment programs for a variety of problems. We routinely follow a collaborative care model, coordinating our work with the patient’s other medical providers. We are also experienced in the integrated care model, and several of our satellite offices are located within other area medical practices.
Debbie, a License Professional Counselor, earned her B.A. in Psychology from Clemson University in 1994 and her Master’s of Science degree in Counseling and her Education Specialist degree in Mental Health Counseling from Florida State University in 1996. Debbie has a broad range of experience and has worked in college student counseling centers, counseled those with severe and persistent mental health disorders, and has counseled people dealing with depression and anxiety in all age groups. Debbie is a P.R.E.P certified marriage counselor. P.R.E.P. counseling offers couples tools to work through tough and persistent marital issues. Debbie also works with adoptive families, both domestic and international adoption, through Harmony Adoptions of Tennessee. She educates and counsels adoptive parents on attachment disorders and issues related to adoption.
Dr. Elledge is a licensed psychologist at the Behavioral Medicine Institute. Dr. Elledge earned her doctorate in clinical child psychology from the University of Kansas Clinical Child Psychology Program in August of 2014. She completed the Child Clinical and Pediatric Psychology Pre-Doctoral Internship at the University of Louisville School of Medicine and Kosair Children’s Hospital in Louisville, Kentucky. She has received training in pediatric psychology, integrated primary care, acute psychiatric inpatient care, and evidence-based outpatient psychotherapy. Dr. Elledge specializes in individual and family therapy for children, adolescents, and their families.
Dr. Fitzpatrick is a Licensed Psychologist. She earned her Master of Arts degree in clinical child and adolescent psychology from East Carolina University in 2005 and continued on to earn her doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Tennessee in 2010. She interned at the Albany Psychology Internship Consortium in Albany, New York where she received training at the Stratton Veterans Affairs Medical Center and the Albany Medical Center acute psychiatric inpatient unit. Dr. Fitzpatrick then completed a postdoctoral fellowship in clinical psychology at the Albany Medical College. Upon returning to Knoxville, she has focused her practice on psychological evaluations for individuals being treated for chronic pain and/or considered for surgery and spinal cord stimulation. She also conducts individual psychotherapy with adults and children. She specializes in the treatment of depression, anxiety, relationship issues, adjustment disorders and personality disorders.
Dr. Foreman, a Psychologist, earned his doctorate in clinical psychology from George Mason University in 2001. He interned at Eastern Virginia Medical School, then completed a postdoctoral fellowship in pain psychology at the University of Virginia Health System Pain Management Center. Dr. Foreman has specialized expertise in the cognitive-behavioral treatment of chronic pain, medically-oriented issues, depression, anxiety disorders, and insomnia. He also specializes in bariatric psychology, including conducting pre-surgical psychological evaluations and follow-up treatment for patients being considered for weight loss surgery.
Mr. Fried, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, earned his Master of Science in Social Work from the University of Tennessee in 1979. He has been a Board Certified Diplomate in Clinical Social Work since 1987. He worked for ten years as director of outpatient services at Holston Mental Health Center in Kingsport, TN. He also served as family therapist for the Oaks of St. Mary’s in Knoxville, TN in the early 1990’s. He has been in full time private practice of psychotherapy since 1992. His specialized areas of treatment include Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, Panic Disorder, and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. He is a clinical member of the Anxiety Disorders Association of America, the International Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Foundation (Advanced Behavior Therapy Training Institute Graduate), and the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies.
Robert Gregory LPC-MHSP is an independent and board certified licensed professional counselor. He has worked in mental health since 1997 and received his Masters of Mental Health Counseling from the University of Tennessee in 2000. Prior to joining BMI, he worked with a diverse population and a broad spectrum of clinical issues both in the community and in area mental health centers. Rob has done extensive work as a counselor with children and families. Rob enjoys assisting children, couples, and families find success within themselves while facing mental health issues. His primary therapeutic interests are behavioral issues, depression, coping, adjustment, anxiety, marital issues, grief, divorce, and general family functioning. Rob specializes in Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Reality Therapy, for individuals, families, couples, and groups.
Dr. Hulse, a Psychologist, obtained his Ph.D. in clinical psychology in 1985 from Bowling Green State University. He interned at Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, completed a postdoctoral fellowship in behavioral medicine at Dartmouth Medical School, and then earned a Postdoctoral Masters degree in clinical psychopharmacology. He is past director of behavioral medicine at Patricia Neal Rehabilitation Center in Knoxville. Since 1990, Dr. Hulse has been in practice at the Behavioral Medicine Institute in Knoxville, which he founded. He has earned Diplomates from the American Board of Sleep Medicine and from the American Academy of Pain Management. He is the recipient of a Presidential Citation from the American Psychological Association and of Outstanding Contributions to Psychology awards from APA Division 55 and the Tennessee Psychological Association. He is a past President of TPA, and currently serves as their Director of State Legislative Affairs.
Dr. Hummel is a licensed psychologist at BMI. She earned her doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Mississippi in 1999. She completed her pre-doctoral internship at Charleston Area Medical Center. Since completing her training, Dr. Hummel has worked in medical and outpatient settings with children and adolescents. She specializes in treating children, adolescents and young adults with anxiety, depression, adjustment disorders and chronic health conditions. She also specializes in parent training and assisting with parent-child relationship difficulties. She is also skilled in the behavioral treatment of toileting and sleep difficulties in children. Dr. Hummel is also on staff at East Tennessee Children’s Hospital.
Dr. Jones, a Psychologist, is a Knoxville native. He attended Earlham College in Richmond. He had a brief stint in Boston University School of Law before deciding on a psychology career. He graduated from the University of Tennessee Knoxville in 1981 with a PhD. in clinical psychology. He worked in a variety of positions at local mental health centers and later spent six years working full-time at the University of Tennessee Medical Center’s substance abuse treatment program. He entered private practice in 1996 and soon after began specializing in pain management and evaluation of addiction risk. He joined Behavioral Medicine Institute and has been in an on-site office at Pain Consultants of East Tennessee full time since 2000. He has presented professional programs locally and regionally and has collaborated with staff at Pain Consultants on several professional papers. He is considered the area’s leading psychological expert on pain-addiction issues and was named 2013’s Clinical Pain Educator of the Year by the American Society of Pain Educators (ASPE).
Rosemary Kitts is a licensed clinical social worker who earned her master of science in social work from the University of Alabama in 1975. She has held her Licensed Clinical Social Worker licensure in the State of Tennessee since 1981. She received the “Diamond Award” for professional excellence in 1991 from Knox Area Mental Health Association and the CISM Appreciation Award in 1999 from the Region 2 Ambulance Directors’ Association. She is the Clinical Director for the East Tennessee Emergency Services Chaplains Association Crisis Response Team. Rosemary has been a therapist in private practice in the Knoxville area since 1985. She specializes in Cognitive-Behavioral counseling with adults who are experiencing depression and anxiety.
Dr. Levy, a Psychologist, earned his doctorate in counseling psychology from Indiana University in 2002. He interned at the University of Maryland Counseling Center. Dr. Levy has specialized expertise in the cognitive-behavioral treatment of attention-deficit disorders, anxiety, depression, and other health conditions, as well as performance enhancement interventions for athletes, performing artists, and business people. Of particular note is his expertise in neurotherapy (i.e., EEG neurofeedback), an intervention designed to help individuals learn to self-regulate their mood and attention and concentration processes thru “brain-training.” In addition, Dr. Levy specializes in psychological assessment and testing, including clinical diagnostic testing, comprehensive ADHD testing, pre-surgical psychological evaluations, fitness-for-duty evaluations, forensic evaluations (including child custody), and career assessments (i.e., pre-employment personality testing, career exploration, managerial and leadership evaluations). He is also an Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
Justin Mynatt is a board certified family psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner. He earned both his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Lincoln Memorial University. While earning his Master’s degree from LMU, he specialized in child and adolescent psychiatry. Justin has been providing medication services in an outpatient community based mental health company since 2013. He has a broad range of experience and has practiced in areas such as youth detention centers and adult crisis stabilization units. At BMI, he is providing medication management to all patients across the lifespan and manages ADHD, anxiety disorders, depression and mood disorders, ODD and behavioral disturbances as well as Schizophrenia and thought disorders.
Dr. Neece, a Psychologist, earned her doctorate in counseling psychology from Texas A&M University in 1994. She interned at Georgia State University. She worked for several years at Utah State University’s Counseling Center, specializing in work with persons with anxiety disorders. After moving to Tennessee in 2002, she completed a post-doctoral internship at Cherokee Health Systems where she gained expertise in autism spectrum disorders and behavioral problems in children. She was employed as a psychologist there from 2004 until beginning private practice in 2008. At BMI, she also provides pediatric sleep and OCD services. She also consults at East Tennessee Children’s Hospital.
Dr. Paulauskas is a board certified General Psychiatrist, and is also a Fellowship-Trained Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist. She earned her MD in 1985. After practicing Internal Medicine in Lithuania for a several years, she moved to the US, and earned her MSW from Loyola University of Chicago. She then completed her General Psychiatry residency followed by a fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, all at the University of Kentucky School of Medicine in Lexington. Her extensive training has helped to serve clients with multiple needs in this community. She has been practicing as a Child, Adolescent, and Adult Psychiatrist since 2004. Though Dr. Paulauskas has worked with patients of all ages, at BMI she is focusing on child and adolescent psychiatry and medication management.
Elizabeth Penegar is a licensed clinical social worker (LSCW) in the state of Tennessee. Elizabeth graduated from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville earning her Master of Science in Social Work in 2000. She has worked as a therapist in the Knoxville area for the last 14 years, providing individual and family therapy to all ages, and specializing in child and adolescent therapy. She is passionate about working with patients and their families struggling with an autism or Asperger’s diagnosis. Elizabeth is client-focused, which means she attends to the goals and needs of you, the client. She believes that therapy can create possibilities for change. By making the choice to seek counseling, you have already begun that first step toward change, in whatever form that may take. This can often be a challenging process, finding someone with whom you can entrust personal and private information. With that in mind, I offer my services in counseling with the ultimate goal of improving the lives of others, one person at a time.
Teresa Pratt is a licensed clinical social worker with specialized experience in geriatrics and human-animal bond issues (pet loss, compassion fatigue, treatment for animal abuse). She earned her master of science in social work from the University of Tennessee in 2007 and also completed a graduate certificate in gerontology during that time.
She has worked in a variety of settings including a partial hospitalization program for older adults experiencing mental health issues and/or mild cognitive decline, veterinary social work through the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine, and community mental health outpatient clinics. While having experience with all age ranges, she currently sees individuals 16 years and older, couples and older adults.
Edith is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) who earned a Bachelor’s degree in both Psychology and Sociology from Berea College in Berea Kentucky in 1983. She earned her Master of Science in Social Work (MSSW) degree from the University of TN Knoxville in 1985 and became an LCSW in 1989.
With 30+ years of experience in the field she has worked with clients of all ages, having particular interest in the field of Gerontology. Much of her time has been spent working with area Nursing Homes and Assisted Living Facilities to provide direct treatment to residents suffering from anxiety or depression, grief and loss, cognitive or behavioral challenges and life transition issues as well as providing consultation and staff training related to Dementia Care. She has worked in a variety of treatment settings including Community Mental Health Centers, Partial Hospitalization Programs, Intensive Outpatient settings, Inpatient Psychiatric Units and providing Social Work and Therapy services in Internal Medicine doctor’s offices.
Currently she provides individual therapy to clients ages 21 to 101 who are suffering with anxiety or depression, mood related issues which are complicated by life situations or physical health diagnoses, and helping seniors to age in place successfully.
Fred Stephens is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who treats patients and problems across the lifespan, beginning with children as young as 8 years old and also addressing problems common to the later years of life. After a long career in computer programming, Mr. Stephens earned his Masters in Social Work at the University of Tennessee. He has worked with children, youth, adults, couples, and families at mental health centers and residential programs. He is particularly interested in patients with persistent depression and anxiety, communication problems, life transitions, and those with personality issues, trauma, and abuse. He also has a particular interest in non-pharmacological treatment of hyperactivity and attention deficit disorder. “Many of us, through our symptoms, are struggling to make sense of our past and how to become comfortably ourselves. I work to help people handle their lives better.”
Dr. Stillman, a Psychologist, earned her doctorate in clinical psychology from Vanderbilt University in 1990 with a specialization in health psychology, then completed a postdoctoral fellowship in behavioral medicine at Dartmouth Medical School. Following a year as staff psychologist at University of Nebraska Medical Center, she returned to Dartmouth Medical School as Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and as a clinician in the Behavioral Medicine Section and the Anxiety Disorders Service. She has been with BMI since 1994. Dr. Stillman specializes in time-limited, cognitive-behavioral treatment of medically-oriented problems, chronic pain and headache, and women’s health issues. She also has particular expertise in the cognitive-behavioral treatment of depression and anxiety disorders.
BMI’s clinicians specialize in the application of the Bio-Psycho-Social Model of health and disease. We provide evaluation and treatment of the psychological aspects of physical disorders and of stress-related disorders. BMI clinicians also treat the full range of general mental health disorders. The group includes psychologists, clinical social workers, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, and licensed professional counselors. It was founded in 1990. We offer empirically-validated assessments and treatment programs for a variety of problems. We routinely follow a collaborative care model, coordinating our work with the patient’s other medical providers. We are also experienced in the integrated care model, and several of our satellite offices are located within other area medical practices.
• Comprehensive Psychological Evaluation
• Comprehensive ADD/ADHD Evaluation
• Comprehensive Psycho-Educational Evaluation
• Opioid/Benzodiazepines Medication Risk Assessment
• Pre-Surgical Psychological Evaluation
• Evaluation and Testing for Diagnostic Clarification and Treatment Recommendations
Pediatric, Adolescent, Family & Marital Services
We have multiple pediatric and family clinicians affiliated with our practice, several of whom specialized in the evaluation and treatment of Autism Spectrum disorders, and other disorders of childhood and adolescence. We also have clinicians who specialize in marital/couples therapy.
Pediatric & Adult Insomnia Programs
Chronic Insomnia is one of the most common problems for which patients seek help from their doctors. Recent research has shown that cognitive-behavioral treatment programs for insomnia are actually significantly more effective than sleeping pills. Our program is based on that research.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea Syndrome is a potentially life-threatening medical condition, but one which can be very effectively treated with Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (C-PAP) machines. However, C-PAP machines present a real challenge for many patients to tolerate–long-term adherence is only about 60% nationally. Our program can markedly improve adherence via addressing anxiety and other issues interfering with a patient’s ability to utilize the device.
Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Program
A traumatic event such as an automobile accident or industrial accident can lead to a severe psychological condition known as Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Our PTSD Program is highly specialized and intensive program. Clinicians evaluate the precise nature and degree of the trauma-based disorder, then utilize all treatments that are known to reduce symptoms so the person can return to work at the earliest possible date.
Pain Management and Rehabilitation Program
Subacute and chronic pain are complex, multidimensional phenomena comprised of several interacting components: psychological, sensory, affective, cognitive, behavioral, and social. The BMI pain program integrates these components into a comprehensive outpatient program designed to assist patients in reaching maximum improvement.
Psychotherapy for Persons with Chronic Health Problems
Patients with disorders such as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and stress-related illnesses often achieve symptom relief from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. CBT includes cognitive restructuring, biofeedback, and psycho-education. Patients with any chronic illness frequently benefit from this treatment approach.
Panic and Phobia Center of Knoxville
Panic Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Specific Phobias, Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder are disabling problems that affect twenty-three million Americans. Research and clinical evidence demonstrate that, with specialized expertise, the patient can have great symptomatic relief in a limited period of time. The clinician guides, teaches, and supports the person throughout treatment.
Psychiatry & Psychopharmacology Services
Although many emotional difficulties can be fully treated with psychotherapy alone, at times additional treatment with medication may be necessary. In fact, research indicates that the combination of psychotherapy and medication can often be the most effective treatment for many conditions. During an initial consultation meeting, patients and our clinicians work together to identify the client’s individual needs and concerns and to determine whether psychotherapy, medication, or a combination of treatment options may be most beneficial for the patient.
At BMI, we offer psychopharmacology treatment and medication management programs for a range of emotional and cognitive problems, including mood problems, anxiety symptoms, and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). When needed, our experienced psychopharmacologists work closely with a patient and his or her therapist to identify the most effective psychopharmacology treatment options for each individual. Through regular follow-up meetings, they also carefully monitor the progress of clients to ensure that each person is receiving optimal benefit from psychopharmacological medications.
BMI’s psychopharmacology and medication management services are also available to patients seeing therapists outside of BMI and for patients not currently in therapy. If you think that you might benefit from a medication consultation, please speak with your therapist about initiating a referral for you to see one of our psychopharmacologists.
Health Improvement and Stress Management Program
The Health Improvement and Stress Management Program is designed for patients with non-organically based problems, such as fatigue, dizziness, or headaches. It is a time-limited, skills-learning program based upon the latest theories of the mind-body relationship and teaches patients how to recognize and deal with recurring physical, stress-related symptoms.
Bariatric Psychology Services
The bariatric psychology services provided at BMI are designed to assist patients throughout the process of undergoing weight loss surgery. Pre-surgical psychological evaluations assess patients’ psychological readiness and suitability for bariatric surgery and include a detailed clinical interview and objective psychological testing. Behavioral medicine intervention prior to weight loss surgery can also help prepare patients for the biopsychosocial adjustments that are often experienced following surgery. Cognitive-behavioral therapy after weight loss surgery can assist patients with adjustment/emotional issues, stress management, and learning alternative coping strategies to address common weight-related issues such as emotional eating/”head hunger”.
• Academic Problems
• Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
• Adjustment Disorder
• Behavior Problems
• Bipolar Disorder
• Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
• Sleep Disorders
• Stress-Related Disorders
For directions, click the direction link in the map below.
For directions, click the direction link in the map below.
At Pain Consultants of East Tennessee
1128 E. Weisgarber Rd, Suite 100, Knoxville, TN 37909
Telephone: 865-579-0552, x 136
At The New Life Center for Bariatric Surgery
Physicians Plaza 1, Suite 305, Turkey Creek Medical Center
10810 Parkside Dr., Knoxville, TN 37934
At Comprehensive Pain Specialists
200 New York Ave.
Suite 150 and 300
Oak Ridge, TN 37830
103 Station Dr.
Maryville, TN 37804
460 Medical Park Dr.
Lenoir City, TN 37772
Book & Resource Recommendations
ADD & ADHD
— Driven To Distraction : Recognizing and Coping with Attention Deficit Disorder from Childhood Through Adulthood
— Delivered from Distraction: Getting the Most out of Life with Attention Deficit Disorder
— Married to Distraction: Restoring Intimacy and Strengthening Your Marriage in an Age of Interruption
— More Attention, Less Deficit: Success Strategies for Adults with ADHD
— The ADHD Effect on Marriage: Understand and Rebuild Your Relationship in Six Steps
— Learning Outside The Lines: Two Ivy League Students With Learning Disabilities And ADHD Give You The Tools
— Livescribe 4 GB Echo Smartpen
— Smart Kids with School Problems: Things to Know and Ways to Help (Plume)
Anxiety & Panic
— Mastery of Your Anxiety and Panic: Workbook (Treatments That Work)
— The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook, Fourth Edition
–Does My Child Have Autism: A Parents Guide to Early Detection and Intervention in Autism Spectrum Disorders
Body Image Issues
— The Body Image Workbook: An Eight-Step Program for Learning to Like Your Looks
Career Planning & Transition
— The Pathfinder: How to Choose or Change Your Career for a Lifetime of Satisfaction and Success
— Career Match: Connecting Who You Are with What You’ll Love to Do
Couples and Marriage Issues
— Getting the Love You Want: A Guide for Couples, 20th Anniversary Edition
— Keeping the Love You Find: A Personal Guide
— The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work: A Practical Guide from the Country’s Foremost Relationship Expert
— After the Affair: Healing the Pain and Rebuilding Trust When a Partner Has Been Unfaithful
— Not “Just Friends”: Rebuilding Trust and Recovering Your Sanity After Infidelity
— The Dance of Anger: A Woman’s Guide to Changing the Patterns of Intimate Relationships
— The Dance of Intimacy
— All the Good Ones Aren’t Taken: Change the Way You Date and Find Lasting Love
— Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy Revised and Updated
— Mind Over Mood: Change How You Feel by Changing the Way You Think
— Uplift Technologies DL930 Day-Light 10,000 Lux SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) Lamp
— Aftermarriage: The Myth of Divorce
— The Good Divorce
— What About the Kids?: Raising Your Children Before, During, and After Divorce
— The Forgiving Self: The Road from Resentment to Connection
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
— The Imp of the Mind: Exploring the Silent Epidemic of Obsessive Bad Thoughts
— 1-2-3 Magic: Effective Discipline for Children 2-12
— Parenting that Works: Building Skills that Last a Lifetime
— Smart Kids with School Problems: Things to Know and Ways to Help
— The Difficult Child: Expanded and Revised Edition
— The Talking Cure
Stress Management & Mindfulness
— The Relaxation & Stress Reduction Workbook
— The Relaxation Response
— Office Yoga: Simple Stretches for Busy People
— Wherever You Go, There You Are
— Health Journeys: Meditations to Relieve Stress
— Managing Chronic Pain: A Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy Approach Workbook
— The Highly sensitive person: how to Thrive when the World Overwhelms You
— The Learn Program for Weight Management 2000
— Overcoming Binge Eating
American Psychological Association
APA Help Center
Mental Health Information
American Heart Association
American Stroke Association
American Diabetes Association
National Center for Communicable Disease
American Cancer Society
General source of health information
ADD/ADHD – http://www.chadd.org or http://www.ldonline
Association for Applied Psychology & Biofeedback – http://www.aapb.org
Alzheimer’s & Dementia – http://www.alzmass.org
Multiple Sclerosis – http://www.nationalmssociety.org
General Neuropsychology Blog – http://www.neuropsychology.co
About Neuropsychologists Blog – http://www.neuropsychologist.co
General Therapy Blog – http://www.therapyboston.net
General Counseling Blog – http://www.counselingboston.net
National Academy of Neuropsychology – http://www.nanonline.org