NEW YORK, NY – A national organization that created the first-ever model system of care for children and young adults with brain injuries announced today it had received a letter of support for its plan from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
The Sarah Jane Brain Foundation (SJBF) and its National Advisory Board drafted the National Pediatric Acquired Brain Injury (PABI) plan in January, a 104-page document that outlines the entire continuum of care for children and young adults with brain injuries.
In a letter dated August 3, the AAP’s President, David T. Tayloe Jr., MD, FAAP, outlined the AAP’s support of the SJBF and its plan.
“Pediatric acquired brain injuries, including those caused by trauma and abuse, stroke, infection, brain tumor, and insufficient oxygen, among others, are a leading cause of death and disability for children, adolescents, and young adults,” Taylor began.
He continued, “There is a need to develop a comprehensive approach to the prevention, evaluation, and treatment of pediatric acquired brain injuries. Multisite collaborative investigation such as that proposed by The Sarah Jane Brain Project would allow the development of evidence based, standardized approaches to the prevention, evaluation, and treatment of pediatric acquired brain injuries so that all children would have access to the highest quality, most effective pediatric health services.”
The letter concluded, “The AAP supports such efforts to address this leading cause of death and disability for our nation’s children and welcomes the opportunity for future collaboration with The Sarah Jane Brain Foundation.”
The AAP furthermore appointed a leading member of its organization to join the National Advisory Board of the SJBF. Dr. Nancy A. Murphy, an Associate Professor in the University of Utah’s Department of Pediatrics, will serve in that capacity.
“It is an honor to be chosen to join the prestigious group of specialists on the National Advisory Board of the Sarah Jane Brain Foundation, and I look forward to working with them to fully implement the National PABI Plan across the country – it is something that has been sorely needed for a very long time,” Murphy noted.
The National Advisory Board of the SJBF consists of over 100 of the top pediatric neurologists and rehabilitation experts from all over the country. Dr. Drew Davis, an Assistant Professor in the Division of Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine at The University of Alabama at Birmingham, who also serves on a Member of the National Advisory Board said, “We are all very excited about the possibilities of working with the American Academy of Pediatrics to implement the National Pediatric Acquired Brain Injury Plan.”
The mission of the SJBF and the goal of its National PABI Plan is to establish a “seamless, standardized, evidence-based system of care, universally accessible for all children and young adults, regardless of where they live in the nation.” It can be read in full by visiting the SJBF website at www.TheBrainProject.org.
The SJBF was founded by Patrick Donohue in October 2007. Donohue’s now 4-year-old daughter, Sarah Jane, was violently shaken by her baby nurse when she was five days old, causing a severe brain injury.
“I am thrilled to have the support of a wonderful organization such as the AAP, and welcome the opportunity to work together to make life better for children with brain injuries and their families,” Donohue stated.
The AAP consists of more than 60,000 pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. It was founded in 1930 and is now the world’s largest publisher of pediatric materials. Its staff of approximately 390 works to bring attention to children’s health issues.