HEADLINER Brain Injury Conference Available on CD. $35 per day all sessions $50 both days all sessions (see page 15)

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1 the HEADLINER The Newsletter of the Brain Injury Association of Oregon What s Inside? Professional Members Page 2-3 Board of Directors Page 2 The Lawyer s Desk Page 4 BIAOR Calendar Page 5 A New Approach to Walking Again Page 6-8 Looking at the Numbers for Returning Troops Page 9-10 Mentor Oregon to Open New ABI Home Page 12 Assessing a Bump on the Head Page 16 Seniors & TBI Page 12 Conference Sponsors and Exhibitors Page Fundraiser & Play Page 20 Advocacy Update Page 21 Support Groups Page Spring 2008 Vol. X Issue Pacific Northwest Brain Injury Conference Living with Brain Injury: Emerging Partnerships Feb 29-March 1, 2008 The 6 th Annual Pacific Northwest Brain Injury Conference Living with Brain Injury: Emerging Partnership was held February 29 and March 1, 2008 in Portland Oregon at the Sheraton Portland Airport Hotel. Washington and Oregon once again united as co-hosts. As the war and TBI are in the news daily, our concern for the returning troops is understandable. But we need to also look at those who sustain their injuries here at home. The facts are that there are over 81,000 Oregonians living with long term problems from traumatic brain injuries. Brain injury is a major cause of death and disability of people under age 45 and a significant medical/legal issue in tort and insurance law today. Using CDC estimates, over 15,000 visits to an emergency room occur in Oregon each year as a result of traumatic brain injury. Across the U.S. traumatic brain injury (TBI) costs over 56 billion dollars every year. This year s conference was our first conference held during Brain Injury Awareness Month in Oregon. After twentyseven years we moved our annual conference from October to March. With a short four month turn around, we had Brain Injury Conference Available on CD $35 per day all sessions $50 both days all sessions (see page 15) attendees. This year our focus was on five major issues: Returning Military and PTSD/TBI; Advocacy and Policy Change; Legal Education; Medical and Behavioral Issues; and Children, Education and TBI. The conference opened on Friday with a Keynote address on the war and how it is affecting our troops by Col. Daniel Thompson, Reintegration Deputy Director from the Oregon National Guard. His heartfelt presentation included a brief overview of what Oregon Governor Kulongoski is doing to help the troops, such as providing helmet liners to prevent brain injuries, and what the Reintegration Team is doing in helping returning troops with adjustment and coping issues set the stage for the presentations to follow during the next two days. Traumatic brain injury is the signature injury of the war as a result of both open head injuries and closed head injuries from improvised explosive devices. Current reports state that twenty percent will have a brain injury (pp. 9-10). Because of the large number of members of the Oregon National Guard and troops from Washington serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, this issue is particularly important in both of our states. The troops are sustaining brain injuries as a result of both open head injuries and closed head injuries from improvised explosive devices. Adam Nelson, PhD, Oregon VA, discussed TBI in Returning Veterans covered TBI and blast injury and how explosions can produce unique patterns of injury seldom seen outside combat. When they do occur, they have the potential to inflict multisystem life-threatening injuries on many persons simultaneously. The injury patterns following such events are a product of the composition and amount of the materials involved, the surrounding environment, delivery method (if a bomb), the distance between the victim and the blast, and any intervening protective barriers or environmental hazards. Because explosions are relatively infrequent, blastrelated injuries can present unique triage, diagnostic, and management challenges to providers of emergency care. Few U.S. health professionals have experience with explosive-related injuries. Vietnam era physicians are retiring, other armed conflicts have been short-lived, and until this past decade, the U.S. was largely spared of the scourge of megaterrorist attacks. Tom Schumacher, WA Dept of VA, Tom Mann, OR Dept of VA, Larry Knauss, Ph.D. Madigan Army Hospital, WA discussed PTSD & TBI. They discussed what Oregon and Washington are doing to help vets with TBI and PTSD., including screening for TBI, mtbi and PTSD, treatments programs, and resources available. Russ Spearman and Mary Kelly, Idaho, discussed the Idaho Virtual Training Series focusing on Veterans Issues and what Idaho is doing to meet those needs. (Brain Injury Conference on page 13) The Headliner Spring 2008 page 1

2 Brain Injury Association of Oregon Board of Directors Frank Bocci, JD/President...Eugene Wayne Eklund, RN/Vice Pres..Salem Jeri Cohen, JD/Treasurer......Creswell Laurie Ehlhardt, PhD/Secretary...Eugene Tom Boyd, PhD.Eugene Curtis Brown....Cheshire Paul Cordo, PhD Portland Andy Ellis, PhD... Portland Danielle Erb, MD Portland Andrea Karl, MD....Clackamas Sara Kendall, MS....Salem David Kracke, JD.....Portland Bruce McLean. Ashland Chuck McGilvrary....Central Point Amy Ream, MD Portland Sen. Bill Morrisette.....Springfield Aleyna Reed, PsyD......Salem Tootie Smith Molalla Col. Daniel Thompson.....Salem Bruce Wojciechowski, OD...Clackamas Brain Injury Association of Oregon PO Box 549 Molalla, Oregon Executive Director: Sherry Stock, MS, CBIS Fax: Toll Free in Oregon Website: Headliner DEADLINES Issue Deadline Publication Spring April 15 May 1 Summer July 15 August 1 Fall October 15 November 1 Winter January 15 February 1 Editor: Sherry Stock, Advertising in Headliner Rate Schedule Issue Annual/ 4 Issues A: Business Card $100 $ 350 B: ¼ Page $200 $ 700 C: ½ Page $300 $1,000 D: Full Page $600 $2,000 Policy The material in this newsletter is provided for education and information purposes only. The Brain Injury Association of Oregon does not support, endorse or recommend any method, treatment, facility, product or firm mentioned in this newsletter. Always seek medical, legal or other professional advice as appropriate. We invite contributions and comments regarding brain injury matters and articles included in The Headliner. When looking for a professional, look for someone who knows and understands brain injuries. The following are supporting professional members of BIAOR. Attorneys PI-Personal Injury, SSI/SSD-Social Security Claims, WC-Workers Compensation Oregon Bend Dwyer Williams Potiel Attorney s LLC, Bend, Eugene Frank Bocci, Jr., Luvass Cobb, Eugene , PI Derek Johnson, Johnson, Clifton, Larson & Schaller, P.C., Eugene David Jensen, Jensen, Elmore & Stupasky, PC, Eugene, , Sisters, Portland area William Berkshire, Portland Mark R. Bocci, Lake Oswego, Kathleen Carr-Gatti, Portland Thomas Carter, Portland Tom D'Amore, D'Amore & Associates, Portland Dr. Aaron DeShaw, Esq., PC, DeShaw & Hathaway, Portland, Lori Deveny, Portland, Gerald Doblie, Doblie & Associates PC, Portland x205 Wm. Keith Dozier, Portland R. Brendan Dummigan, Portland Linda Eyerman, Gaylord Eyerman Bradley,PC, Portland Peggy Foraker, Gresham Bill Gaylord, Gaylord Eyerman Bradley,PC, Portland Peter Hansen, Portland Ron Hoover, Portland, (Guardianships & Conservatorships) James R. Jennings, PC, Gresham Rick Klingbeil, Portland David Kracke, Nichols & Associates, Portland , PI Sharon Maynard, Bennett, Hartman, Morris & Kaplan, Portland , SSI/SSD Jeff Merrick, Lake Oswego Jeffrey Mutnick, Portland Robert Neuberger, Portland Craig Allen Nichols, Nichols & Associates, Portland Stephen Piucci, Piucci & Dozier, Portland Richard A. Sly, Portland , SSI/SSD Steve Smucker, Portland Judy Snyder, Portland Larry Sokol, Sokol & Anuta, PC, Portland Tichenor& Dziuba Law Offices, Portland , PI Kimberly K. Tucker, Portland, Richard Vangelisti, Vangelisti Law Offices PC, Portland Ralph Wiser III, Wiser & Associates, Inc., Lake Oswego , PI & SSI/SSD Salem area Adams, Day & Hill, Salem, , PI Roger Evans, Salem, Nevada Tim Titolo, Titolo Law Office, Las Vegas, NV, , PI Washington Baumgartner, Nelson & Price, Vancouver Harlan, Beau, Harlan Law Firm, Vancouver Donald Jacobs, NW Injury Law Center, Vancouver Chiropractic Robert Pfeiffer, DC, DABCO, Pendleton Thomas Kelly, DC, Chiropractic Neurologist, Kelly Chiropractic, PS, Vancouver, WA, Cognitive Rehabilitation Centers/Therapists Gentiva Rehab Without Walls, Mountlake Terrace, WA Progressive Rehabilitation Associates BIRC, Portland, Lynne Williams, Lynne Williams Cognitive Rehab. Therapy, Central Point Dentists Beverlee Cutler,, DMD, Portland, Dr. Nicklis C. Simpson, Adult Dental Care LLC, Gleneden Beach Dan Thompson, DMD, Lake Oswego Educators Diana Allen, Linn Benton Lincoln ESD, Albany McKay Moore-Sohlberg, University of Oregon, Eugene Lisa Myers, Portland Community College Martha Simpson, South Coast ESD, Coos Bay EMT Brad Cohen, EMT, Owner, Cottage Grove Chevrolet, Inc., Cottage Grove Expert Testimony Dr. Theodore J. Becker, Physical Capacity Evaluations, PhD in Human Performance, Certified Disability Analyst, EPI Rehab Everett, WA Janet Mott, PhD, CRC, CCM, CLCP, Life Care Planner, Loss of Earning Capacity Evaluator, Counseling Jane Fortune, LCSW, Mindsight Center, LLC, Portland, Margery Minney, Valley Caregiver Resource Center, Financial Services Kayla Aalberg Eklund, Structured Settlement Broker, Oregon, Housing (subacute, community based, inpatient, outpatient, nursing care, supervised-living, behavior, coma management, driver evaluation, hearing impairment, visual impairment, counseling, pediatric) page 2 Spring 2008 The Headliner

3 Carol Altman, Homeward Bound, Hillsboro Ann Swader Angvick, Uhlhorn Program, Eugene, Karen Campbell, Highland Height Home Care, Inc, Gresham & Portland, Casa Colina Centers for Rehabilitation, Pomona, CA, Rondi Grace, ABI Director, Mentor Oregon, Portland x144 Lynn Hanson, Long Term Care TBI Coordinator, DHS, State of Oregon Margaret Horn, Avamere Health Services, Wilsonville, Robert Jacobson, Umpqua Homes, Roseberg Kampfe Management Services, Pam Griffith, Portland, Jim Lewis, Sandy, ± Joana Olaru, Alpine House, Beaverton, Ridgeview Assisted Living Facility, Jolene Hermant, Medford, Sharon Slaughter, Windsor Place, Inc., Salem, Life Care Planners/Case Manager/Social Workers Priscilla Atkin, Providence Medford Medical Center, Medford, Rebecca Bellerive, Rebecca Bellerive, RN, Inc, Portland Coleen Carney, RN, Carney Smith & Associates, Portland Wayne Eklund, Wayne Eklund RN CNLCP Salem Becky Mungai, RN, BA, CLNC, PLLC Florida Dana Penilton, RN, BSN,CCM, CLCP, Dana Penilton Consulting, Inc., Portland, Bonnie Robb, Bonnie Robb Consulting, Lake Oswego, Thomas Weiford, Weiford Case Management & Consultation, Voc Rehab Planning, Portland Legal Assistance/Advocacy Oregon Advocacy Center, Portland, SEIU Local 503, OPEU, Megan Moyers, Portland, Long Term TBI Rehab Brad Loftis, Cognitive Enhancement Center, Portland, Medical Professionals *Sonja Bolon, Art Therapist, Mental Health Therapist, Milwaukie, Marie Eckert, RN/CRRN, Legacy HealthCare, Portland, Carol Marusich, OD, Neuro-optometrist, Lifetime Eye Care, Eugene, Martin McMorrow, The Mentor Network, Illinois, Aleyna Reed, RN, PsyD, Nurse Practitioner, Salem, Kayle Sandberg-Lewis, LMT,MA, Neurofeedback, Portland, Karen Schade, Trauma-Legacy Emanuel Hospital, Portland Alex J. Smith, OD, Neuro-developmental Optometry, Northwest EyeCare Professionals, Jill Stanard, Naturopathic Medicine, National College of Natural Medicine, Portland Sharon Stapleton, RN, BSN, CCRN, Portland Bruce Wojciechowski, OD, Clackamas, Neurooptometrist, Northwest EyeCare Professionals, Physicians Sharon Anderson, MD, West Linn Bryan Andresen, Rehabilitation Medicine Associates of Eugene-Springfield, Jeffrey Brown, MD, Neurology, Portland Janice Cockrell MD, Pediatric Development & Rehabilitation-Emanuel Children s Hospital, Portland Danielle L. Erb, M.D., Brain Injury Rehabilitation Center, Portland John French,MD, Salem Rehabilitation Associates, Salem Molly Hoeflich, Providence Portland Medical Centre- Medical Director, rehab unit, Portland Andrea Karl, MD, Kaiser Permanente, Clackamas, Martha MacRitchie MD, Rehab Medicine Association of Eugene-Springfield, Eugene Oregon Rehabilitation Medicine, P.C., Portland, Thomas P. Welch, MD, Psychiatry, Portland Psychologists/ NeuroPsychologists Tom Boyd, PhD, Sacred Heart Medical Center, Eugene Cheryl Brischetto, PhD, Progressive Rehabilitation Associates, Portland, James E. Bryan, PhD, Portland *Caleb Burns, Portland Psychology Clinic, Portland, Patricia S. Camplair, Ph. D., OHSU Dept of Neurology, Portland, John R Crossen, Portland Elaine Greif, PhD, Portland Colleen Hanson, EdD, Tigard, Sharon M Labs Ph. D, Portland Will Levin, PhD, Mpower Wellness, Eugene, Kate Morris, PhD, Salem Rehab Hospital, Salem Wendy Newton, Portland, Rory Richardson, Lincoln City, Susan Rosenzweig, PsyD, Portland, Benson Schaeffer, Ph.D, Portland *Jane Starbird, PhD, Portland Margaret Sutko, PhD, Pediatrics, Portland, Mark Tilson, PhD, RIO, Portland John Woodland, school psychologist, Gold Beach Recreation & Travel Services Ryan Ogan, Get Up and Go, Assisted Travel, LLC, Independence for Life, LLC, Wilsonville, Speech and Language Channa Beckman, Harbor Speech Pathology, WA John E. Holing, Glide Jan Johnson, Community Rehab Services of Oregon, Inc., Eugene, Linda Lorig, Springfield, Carol Mathews-Ayres, Monmouth Anne Parrott, Legacy Emanuel Hospital Warren Doug Peterson, Progressive Rehabilitation Associates, Portland, Christine Talbott, Yakima Hearing & Speech Center, WA, State of Oregon Lisa Millet, MSH, Injury Prevention and Epidemiology, Dept of Human Services, State of Oregon James Walker, LCSW, Douglas County Mental Health Division, Technology/Assistive Devices Brain Book System Work manager, Kathy Moeller, Vocational Rehabilitation/Rehabilitation Roger Burt, MS, CADC, St. of Oregon Voc Rehab, Portland Linda L Hill MS CAC, Linda Hill Job Coaching, Portland Kristi Hyman, Vocational Rehabilitation, Medford Marty Johnson, Community Rehab Services of Oregon, Inc., Eugene, Robert Malone, Liberty Northwest Insurance Corporation, Portland, Karen McDonald, OR Commission for the Blind, Portland Bruce McLean, Vocational Resource Consultants, Ashland, Meg Munger, Kaiser Rehab Services Liaison, Milwaukie Web Design Karen Cuno-Stoeffler, OregonRose Associates, Corvallis, Business MaryJane Kilhefner, KBI Insurance, Portland, Michael Kesten, KestenMedia, Portland, Tootie Smith, Prairie House Inn, Former OR Legislator, Patrons/Professional Members Alice Avolio, MS, Portland ± Richard & Pamela Olson Dulude, Salem Kevin Elkins, Alvadore Judith Moore, Portland ± Bill Olson, Salem Names in bold are BIAOR Board members Corporate Member Gold Member Silver Member ± Bronze Member Sustaining Member Non-Profit * Support Group Facilitator p To become a supporting professional member of BIAOR see page 23 or contact BIAOR, The Headliner Spring 2008 page 3

4 The Lawyer s Desk: A Look at TBI Legal Representation By David Kracke, Attorney at Law Nichols & Associates, Portland, Oregon As a lawyer representing TBI survivors, my job is to help the survivor and their loved ones through the difficult times following a brain injury. I possess the skills and the tools to address various financial and social concerns so important to the survivor s well being after a TBI. Other professionals bring their own special skills and tools to address other pressing concerns of the survivor. Together, we do our best to make the survivor s life better. All of us, however, including survivors, professionals, family members, loved ones and everyone else have two important tools available to us to minimize the probability that we will suffer a traumatic brain injury. Those tools are prevention and preparation. Prevention and preparation take many forms. Their use requires an understanding that danger exists in the world, that statistics are cold measurements without regard for social status or economic standing, and that unfortunately, injury can occur to anyone, anywhere, anytime. Of course, certain activities are less dangerous than others. I have injured myself skiing, but I have never been injured writing an article at my desk. I use the tools of preparation and prevention depending on the situation, and I am better off, and at less risk, because of it. Prevention is a tool that requires an understanding of the what ifs in life. This understanding is inherent in many areas of law. A landlord has a duty to inspect her premises, to discover latent dangers on those premises, and to either cure the dangers or warn the users of the premises of those dangers. We are never surprised to see the orange cones at a store warning of a slippery floor, or to see protection devices in place so that the stack of wood at the home supply store won t fall on us. The law requires children to wear bike helmets, requires us to use seat belts or to wear helmets while riding motorcycles. Despite the cries from some people who feel put upon, who feel that their freedom of choice is being infringed, the law says it doesn t matter. The framers of those laws, like all of us who have either suffered a TBI or have cared for someone who has, know that any perceived imposition is vastly outweighed by not suffering a traumatic brain injury. Preparation, in the context of this column, is the act of anticipating the potential of future injury and buying insurance today that will help in the future if necessary. I am aware of the expense of enhanced insurance, but I also recommend doing what is necessary to purchase it. I recommend having a disability policy to pay the equivalent of lost wages, an uninsured or underinsured motorist policy in an amount large enough to provide for your needs in the event you are injured by another driver, increasing your automobile Personal Injury Protection (PIP) benefits from the statutory $15, to $50,000.00, and increasing PIP s duration coverage from one year to three years. Personal medical insurance will also help ease the burden of the unforeseen injury. Another way we can prevent traumatic brain injuries is to be aware of our environment, and be courteous toward others. If a pedestrian crosses in front of you, stop. If the light turns yellow, don t speed through the intersection. If you are near a bike rider, be patient and give them the right of way. Believe me, no one expects that they will get in a collision, but collisions happen everyday. If we slow down, if we re content waiting for another rotation of the traffic signals we may just prevent an injury to ourselves and to others. If using our tools of prevention and preparation prevents even one traumatic brain injury it will be well worth it. David Kracke is an attorney with the law firm of Nichols and Associates in Portland. Nichols & Associates has been representing brain injured individuals for over twenty two years. Mr. Kracke is available for consultation at (503) The Brain Injury Association of Oregon can deliver a range of trainings for your organization. This includes: Brain Injury 101 Blast Injuries: The Signature Injury of the war Methamphetamine and Brain Injury ADA Awareness including cognitive interactive simulation Judicial and Police: Working with People with Brain Injury Traumatic Brain Injury: A Guide for Educators Native People and Brain Injury How Brain Injury Affects Families Brain Injury for Medical and Legal Professionals-What you need to know. Caregiver Training Dealing with Behavioral Issues Returning to Work After Brain Injury For more information contact Sherry Stock, Executive Director, Brain Injury Association of Oregon at or page 4 Spring 2008 The Headliner

5 Coming in the Fall of 2008 Homeward Bound Rehabilitation s DAY PROGRAM Because we believe that each brain injury survivor deserves to be motivated, encouraged and supported within a goal directed and stimulating process as they heal. For more information call Traumatic Brain Injury Act Signed into Law April 28, 2008, the President signed the Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Act into Law. S. 793, the "Traumatic Brain Injury Act of 2008," authorizes appropriations and makes changes to the Department of Health and Human Services programs that provide grants for State programs for: tracking and reporting of brain injuries; and brain injury rehabilitation. Our thanks should be extended to all those who have worked so hard to see that this act was reauthorized, especially to our national organization, the Brain Injury Association of America whose leadership spearheaded efforts to get the act passed and to U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ-), the Co-Chairman of the Congressional Brain Injury Task Force who was the prime sponsor of this legislation. Here are some comments from Rep. Pascrell: After two years of fighting to reauthorize the TBI Act, I am pleased that the President has joined me to approve an extension of federal services and care for brain injury victims. With thousands of brain injury survivors returning from military service and 5.3 million Americans suffering from TBI here at home, it is more critical than ever for the federal government to prioritize brain injury prevention and rehabilitation. May BIAOR Calendar of Events For updated information, please go to Call the office with any questions or requests 9:30 am - 3:30 pm May July March st Annual Brain Injury Camping and Rafting Trip Who: Persons with brain injuries and their family/caretakers What: Camping and Rafting Trip, 1 mile Hike to Rainy Falls on Sunday When: Friday-Sunday, July th, Rafting is on Sat the 19th Where: Indian Mary State Park. 10 miles off of I-5 exit #61 Put on by: Southern Oregon Brainstormers Cost: Practical Strategies for Managing Executive Function Impairment in Individuals with Brain Injury McKay Sohlberg, Ph.D. & Laurie Ehlhardt, Ph.D. will provide an overview of executive function impairments and practical strategies for supporting clients with deficits related to executive function. THE DOWNTOWN ATHLETIC CLUB 999 WILLAMETTE STREET, EUGENE, OR FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CALL or Molalla Bike Rodeo 1st Annual Camping and Rafting 7th Annual NW Brain Injury Conference Living with Brain Injury: Emerging Partnership Sheraton Airport Hotel, Portland OR Campsites tents $17, Yurts $28 per night Rafting Renting: $10 per person and you will go in a 6-8 person raft. $15 per person for Tahiti. The cost includes raft, lifejacket, oar and shuttle. For Further Information and details: Contact: Lorita Cushman Please put BI Camping in subject line Telephone: (please call after 1:00 PM) The Headliner Spring 2008 page 5

6 A New Approach to Walking Again for Those Living with TBI Finding help for someone to walk or stand again, and going from clinic to clinic looking for answers, may seem like a way of life for family members of those living with traumatic brain injuries. Faced with the uncertainty as to whether a family member can regain some or most of their functioning to walk or stand again, while simultaneously managing and maintaining the loved one s activities of daily living to the highest possible degree, can be a daunting task. Bonnie Baker of Eugene knows all too well those experiences from her own personal situation, living with her son Chad Corliss who received a TBI in a car wreck in October 2001 and remained in a coma for 5 months. She and her husband Craig Corliss lived everyday trying to address her son's neurological recovery and mobility issues. When Chad first tried to stand and take steps, three people supported him and one person was at each leg helping him to move. They used gait belts, they installed handrails through their home, and they even taped candy bars to the ceiling to entice him to stand and reach. They rented standing machines used by paraplegics. Physical therapists used traditional methods, culminating with encouraging him to walk using parallel bars. He stood and took a few steps independently, but never progressed beyond that and finally declared that he would not be walking--in fact, that he would rather scoot on the floor. He used a wheelchair 100% of the time for 3 and a half years. Then, Chad stood on his own and began to walk. At the 6 th Annual BIAOR Conference in Portland, Bonnie and other family members of those living with TBI watched a video of a young man named Knute who suffered a TBI 23 years ago in a motor vehicle accident. Knute s video footage documented his remarkable progress during the 8 month span from May 2007 until January In less than one year, Knute has gone from being wheelchair bound to walking over 500 feet per therapy session (see v=ukkm1ln7orw). After Bonnie watched Knute's video, she commented that if her son Chad had had access to a Gait Harness System (GHS) when he first tried to walk, he might not have given up on walking for 3 and one half years. She said she hopes therapists who work with brain injured patients will learn about it and incorporate it into their practices. Bonnie said, The video footage of brain injured folks using the GHS brought tears to my eyes because it reminds us to never give up and to keep on trying new things. Using the GHS, many patients are now beginning to walk and stand again for the first time in many years. Cheri Babb, RN and Executive Director, Grace Center for Adult Day Services, in Corvallis; Joe Millen, PT, MTC, Impact Health and Performance, in Palm Harbor, Florida; and Bill Thornton, MPT, Center for Spinal Cord Injury Recovery (CSCIR), the Rehab Institute of Michigan at Wayne State University, Detroit Medical Center, will share with you wide spread examples of clients and therapists using the GHS successfully; examples which have spanned nearly a decade. These clinicians have all worked with TBI and SCI patients who were told they could never walk again, but who are now able to walk again using the GHS. Other individuals who have suffered TBI s and SCI s and are 5, 10, and 15 years post injury are experiencing similar results. Recovery of function is becoming more common because the GHS allows therapists and patients to work more efficiently together towards a common goal, walking in the most independent manner possible. The Grace Center for Adult Day Services in Corvallis is one of the facilities here in Oregon which is making progress in this area. Cheri Babb, Executive Director of The Grace Center, is seeing this first hand. Cheri says, I asked Second Step to first come to our clinic because they were referred to us by a local hospital that had been using the Gait Harness System. We had one staff member injured on the job when trying to walk one of our patients, and had a worker s compensation claim approved through SAIF to purchase equipment which would keep her, and the staff, safer from injury. At first, many of my staff were reluctant to try this piece of equipment, until they shared the team experience for themselves. They learned very quickly that their natural effort, combined with the patient s willingness and abilities, meant walking and standing again. They continue to see their patients make remarkable progress beyond anything that anyone thought was possible at the time. The GHS provides them with the tool they need to accomplish a necessary step in the recovery process. As Cheri goes on to say, We have been using the Second Step Gait Harness System (GHS) ambulator since late 2005, and we have seen great results with several of our participants (clients). Of particular note is the experience of our youngest participant, Knute M., who is now 35 years old. When Knute was 11 years old, he had a traumatic brain injury from a MVA and had never walked after that accident. In February 2006 Knute began walking in the GHS twice a week at Grace Center. This was a dream come true for this young man! Knute s recovery was slow, walking only a few feet, but had worked his way up to feet by October of 2007, and now routinely walks feet in the GHS. He has been focusing on improving his technique in addition to distance, and he can now use the GHS with the assistance of only one staff member who walks behind the ambulator. Knute s posture, balance, and gait have improved greatly with practice and coaching. Staff members encourage him to bring his shoulders backward, tuck under your buns (tilt hips & pelvis forward), and take smaller steps. Knute s thigh muscle strength and size have increased so much that he now needs a larger size harness! His home caregiver says that he is much stronger and better able to assist with transfers. The Second Step GHS has also allowed several of our other participants who had stopped walking to regain their ambulatory ability. We have found it is especially useful for hemiplegic participants who have very poor balance and are therefore at high risk for falls. The GHS prevents injury not (Walking Again Continued on page 7) page 6 Spring 2008 The Headliner

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