During a press conference this afternoon, Susan H. Connors, President and CEO of the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA), endorsed the National Brain Injury Surveillance System Act of 2014. Congressmen Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-N.J.) and Tom Rooney (R-Penn.) introduced the legislation today, which is Brain Injury Awareness Day.
When enacted, the legislation will direct the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to collect national data on traumatic brain injuries (TBI) across the lifespans of people with brain injuries. It will also collect additional data on individuals at the time of the injury, such as the severity of the injury, previous history of brain injury, co-occurring issues such as substance abuse or PTSD, and pre-existing conditions like ADHD or learning disabilities.
“When an individual sustains a brain injury it is not an event, it is the start of a lifelong disability,” said Connors. “An individual with a brain injury needs the appropriate access to care immediately after their injury and continued therapy so they may be active in their communities and return to work.”
“Comprehensive data will drive the development of systems of care that are needed to meet this growing public health problem, as well as guide prevention efforts and support research activities, that I hope will someday lead to a cure.” Connors said in closing. “BIAA thanks Congressman Pascrell and Congressman Rooney for introducing the National Traumatic Brain Injury Surveillance System Act of 2014 today.”