[ Back to EurekAlert! ] Public release date: 12-Dec-2012
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Contact: Carolann Murphy
CMurphy@KesslerFoundation.org
973-324-8382
Kessler Foundation

Kessler awarded $2 million federal grant for Northern NJ Traumatic Brain Injury System

Project Director Nancy Chiaravalloti, Ph.D., leads NNJTBIS, a cooperative effort of Kessler Foundation, Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey

WEST ORANGE, NJ. December 12, 2012. –The National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) of the U.S. Department of Education awarded a $2.2 million federal grant to Kessler Foundation. The five-year grant (H133A120030) funds the Northern New Jersey Traumatic Brain Injury System (NNJTBIS), a comprehensive system of care, research, education and dissemination aimed at improving quality of life for people with traumatic brain injury. The NNJTBIS is a cooperative effort of Kessler Foundation, Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in Newark

"We are pleased to be a part of the national TBIMS Centers Program, which plays a tremendously important role in addressing the myriad issues that adversely affect quality of life for people with TBI," said Nancy Chiaravalloti, PhD, project director of the NNJTBIS and director of TBI Research at Kessler Foundation. "Through the NNJTBIS, we have developed cognitive rehabilitation strategies that help people manage memory loss after TBI. Our new research study addresses deficits in processing speed, which are the most common disabling sequelae of TBI. We are interested in more than recovery; we want to get people back to school and back to work as productive members of their communities. "

"Individuals with TBI experience a wide range of medical, physical, functional and cognitive challenges that are best addressed through a comprehensive program of specialized care and treatment," said Neil N. Jasey, Jr., co-investigator and medical director to the NNJTBIMS, and director of brain injury rehabilitation at Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation. "Being part of the TBI Model System enables us to deliver this advanced care and evidence-based treatment, improve the quality of life for these individuals, and expand the expand the boundaries of brain injury rehabilitation and research."

NNJTBIS collects patient data from the time of injury through long-term follow-up, which are contributed to the national TBI National Data and Statistical Center along with data from 15 other regional model systems. These national summary data are used to identify areas where investigation is needed to improve care and long-term outcomes. John DeLuca, PhD, vice president of Research & Training at Kessler Foundation is co-project director of NNJTBIS. John O'Neill, PhD, director of Disability & Employment Research at Kessler Foundation, and Bruce M. Gans, MD, executive vice president and chief medical officer at Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, are co-investigators.

According to U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ-8), who co-chairs the Congressional Traumatic Brain Injury Task Force, "The importance of coordinated medical care and rehabilitation is critical to an individual's recovery. With this grant, Kessler, which is one of only eight centers in the nation to have Centers of Excellence for both Traumatic Brain Injury and Spinal Cord Injury, continues its leadership in the field of rehabilitation research and treatment."

Drs. Chiaravalloti, DeLuca, Gans and Jasey have faculty appointments at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey-New Jersey Medical School. Dr. O'Neill is on the faculty of the Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University.

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Recent publications from the TBI Model System:

Cantor JB, et al. Insomnia, Fatigue, and Sleepiness in the First 2 Years After Traumatic Brain Injury: A NIDRR TBI Model System Module Study. J Head Trauma Rehabil. 2012 Nov;27(6):E1-E14.

Lequerica A, et al. Psychometric Properties of the Multidimensional Assessment of Fatigue Scale in Traumatic Brain Injury: A NIDRR Traumatic Brain Injury Model Systems Study. J Head Trauma Rehabil. 2012 Nov;27(6):E28-E35.

TBI News & Views Fall 2012 Newsletter

About Kessler Foundation

Kessler Foundation, a large public charity in the field of disability, conducts rehabilitation research in mobility and cognition that advances the care of people with multiple sclerosis, brain injury, stroke and spinal cord injury. Kessler Foundation is one of eight centers in the U.S. to have NIDRR-funded model systems for both traumatic brain injury and spinal cord injury. Kessler Foundation Program Center fosters new approaches to the persistently high rates of unemployment among people disabled by injury or disease. Targeted grant making funds promising programs across the nation.

Find us at www.KesslerFoundation.org
Like us at http://www.facebook.com/KesslerFoundation
Follow us @KesslerFound

About Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation

Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, a division of Select Medical, provides comprehensive care and specialized treatment to address the complex needs of individuals with spinal cord injury, brain injury, stroke, amputation, neurological diseases, cardiac recovery and orthopedic/musculoskeletal conditions. Kessler is one of only eight federally designated Model Systems in the nation for the treatment and research of both traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries. Ranked as one of the top two rehabilitation hospitals in the nation and the best in the East by U.S. News & World Report, Kessler has three hospital campuses in West Orange, Saddle Brook and Chester, N.J., and more than 80 outpatient centers throughout the state. For more information, visit www.kessler-rehab.com.

Kessler Foundation Contacts:
Carolann Murphy
973-324-8382
Cmurphy@KesslerFoundation.org

Lauren Scrivo
973-324-8384
Lscrivo@KesslerFoundation.org

Kessler Institute Contact:
Gail Solomon
973-243-6879
Gsolomon@kessler-rehab.com



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