Town Hall Meeting April 2 on Traumatic Brain Injuries in Children

Sarah Jane Brain Foundation In The News


Experts provide tips on how to support children returning to school with the condition


CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – As Virginia’s lead center for the Sarah Jane Brain Project, Kluge Children’s Rehabilitation Center at the University of Virginia Health System will host a town hall meeting on traumatic brain injuries on Saturday, April 2. This free event is open to parents, educators and healthcare providers and will focus on the particular challenges when children return to school after a traumatic brain injury.

In both sessions none of the students raised their hands when Mabry posed the question, “how many of are confident that you would be able to identify a concussion in yourself or a teammate?” Mabry pointed out that the largest age group at risk of concussions is high school age or younger and that the potentially fatal “Second Impact Syndrome” (which is when a second concussion occurs before the brain has adequate time to heal from an initial concussion) only occurs in people 21 years of age and younger. Mabry said “we aren’t asking you not to play sports we are just asking you to be to be smart about concussions.”

Traumatic brain injuries, including concussions are the leading cause of death and disability for America’s youth. Recent data from the Center’s for Disease Control estimate that 1.7 million people sustain a traumatic brain injury annually. Concussions are particularly prevalent among children and the effects of concussions or other traumatic brain injuries can be mild to severe with significant impact on a child’s continued development.

Dr. Peter Patrick, neuropsychologist at KCRC, will talk about the long-term impact of a traumatic brain injury and discuss the need for professional and family collaboration when preparing a child to return to school. Together with Dr. Patrick, participants will discuss recommendations for needed resources, problem areas and solutions.

This event is a part of The Sarah Jane Brain Project’s National Pediatric Brain Injury Prevention and Awareness Tour, a nationwide public awareness campaign dealing with brain injury. The tour, making stops in more than 40 U.S. states, aims to bring awareness about traumatic brain injuries, including youth sports concussions to high schools across the country as well as introduce the National Pediatric Acquired Brain Injury Plan (PABI Plan) through town hall meetings at local universities and hospitals.

Saturday’s event will take place from 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at Kluge Children’s Rehabilitation Center located at 2270 Ivy Road, Charlottesville. To register for the event, please call 434.243.4862.

Media opportunities at the event: (For media opportunities, please arrive promptly at 9:30 a.m.)

* Interview Peter Patrick, neuropsychologist at KCRC, about the long-term effects of traumatic brain injuries

* Interview Erika Langhart, Director of Public Relations for the Sarah Jane Brain Foundation, about the importance of a national PABI plan