CHAPEL HILL, NC – – On Saturday, January 29th the Sarah Jane Brain Project held a town hall at the Matthew Gfeller Sports-Related TBI Research Center at UNC Chapel Hill. The topic was “How Do We Prevent, Identify and Treat Concussions in Youth?”
Kevin Guskiewicz, PhD, ATC is a Kenan Distinguished Professor, Chair of the Exercise and Sport Science Department at UNC-Chapel Hill and Director of the Matthew Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center. Dr. Guskiewicz served as the moderator of the event and introduced the expert panelists. The panelists included local, state and national brain injury specialists.
Johna-Register-Mihalik, PhD, ATC is a post-doctoral Research Associate at the Matthew Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Resource Center. She spoke about the importance of prevention of youth concussions. Jason Mihalik
Also on the panel was Clinical Child Neuropsychologist,Alanna Conder, Psy.D. DABPS She works fro the Carolina Neuropsychological Service and spoke about the importance of helping youth reintegrate into their schools and with their families after they suffer a brain injury. Robert Conder, Psy.D., ABPN, ABPP-CN & RP, Director of Carolina Neuropsychological Service, focused on the brain injuries of young adults and adult transition. Stephen Hooper, MD is the Professor and Associate Director of the Clinical Center for the Study of Development and Learning at the Child Development Institute, UNC-Chapel Hill. Dr. Hooper spoke about developing and implementing the Pediatric Acquired Brain Injury (PABI) plan for North Carolina.
Robert and Lisa Gfeller, founders of the Matthew Gfeller Sports-Related TBI Research Center were in attendance. Mr. Gfeller spoke to the crowd about his personal experience with youth brain injury. The Gfeller’s founded the Matthew Alan Gfeller Foundation after their son, Matthew, suffered a severe helmet to helmet collision during his first varsity football game causing a fatal traumatic brain injury. They helped found the Matthew Gfeller Sport-Related TBI Research Center at UNC-Chapel Hill with the mission of providing the highest level of care for athletes of all ages suffering from sports- related brain injuries, and to assist parents, coaches and medical professionals in managing student athletes.
The event was organized by the Brain Injury Association of North Carolina (http://www.bianc.net) and the Sarah Jane Brain Foundation of New York (http://thebrainproject.org).