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Weekly Brain Injury Legislative Update

Here is this week's traumatic brain injury legislative update provided by the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA)

Health Care Reform Update

Currently, the Senate Finance Committee has reached no consensus on major provisions of the anticipated health care overhaul, raising doubts that it will be considered this month.  Committee members remain at an impasse in part because members still lack a clear picture of what potential policy choices would cost.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO), which estimates what legislation will cost the taxpayers, is scrambling to analyze dozens of policy options the committee is considering. Without cost estimates, lawmakers say it is difficult to decide which provisions they can support. (CQ)

BIAA will continue monitoring the situation closely.

BIAA mobilizes Grassroots Advocates in Support of The conTACT Act

On Thursday, June 4, 2009, BIAA circulated an action alert with the intent to urge members of Congress to sign on to HR 1347, the Concussion Treatment and Care Tools Act of 2009(ConTACT Act). 

The bill would require the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to convene a conference to adopt official concussion guidelines. The bill would also provide grants to states for the purpose of ensuring that elementary and secondary schools implement these guidelines by funding computerized pre-season baseline and post-injury neuropsychological testing for student athletes.

BIAA Submits Comments to NIDRR in Response to Proposed Priorities for RRTCs

This week, BIAA submitted comments to the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) specifically regarding the fourth priority included in the proposed plan for the Rehabilitation Research and Training Centers (RRTCs) entitled, "Developing Strategies to Foster Community Integration and Participation for Individuals with Traumatic Brain Injury." 

BIAA expressed strong support for the inclusion of a brain injury related research priority.  However, BIAA also detailed some concerns related to the strategies used in the priority to foster community integration and participation for affected individuals. As proposed, this priority would develop a classification system based on symptoms experienced by individuals with TBI who are living in the community.

BIAA explained that no two brains are alike and each and every individual presents with different symptoms, and each injury results in different challenges. Therefore, trying to categorize these injuries could be counterproductive to the priority's goal.

BIAA also suggested several suggestions in lieu of a categorization strategy.  For further reading, the full text will be posted on BIAA's web site shortly.

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