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August 2020

Save the Date
BIAPA Virtual Annual Meeting
Followed by Coffee House
Thursday, October 15, 2020 

3:00  PM.

2020 Brain Injury Conference:  Educational Series

Join us virtually November 5, 2020 through April 22, 2021 for our 20th Annual Conference that will be held as a virtual Educational Series over a span of 6 months to bring you the high-quality content the Conference committee and speakers worked so hard to prepare prior to the onset of COVID-19. Registration will be available on the BIAPA website with a target date of September 9th.  We'll send an email blast with details and links. 

Enhancing Cognitive Functioning after Brain Injury: Progress and Challenges presented by Dr. John Whyte will be our first topic, presented on Thursday, November 5, 2020 from 3:00 PM - 4:30 PM.  Cognitive problems are important across the brain injury severity spectrum. Research on disorders of consciousness (DOC) now supports changes in the standard of care and healthcare access. Evidence on treatments for cognitive impairments in higher functioning individuals has been slower to accumulate, and controversies remain regarding the most effective approaches to cognitive rehabilitation, who should deliver them, and whether they should be covered by insurance. This presentation will review the current evidence regarding the ability to improve cognitive function after brain injury, as well as some of the challenges that have limited progress in this area.

Also - mark your calendars for for June 27-29, 2021, when we hope to be able to resume our in-person Conference at the Lancaster Marriott at Penn Square!

BIAPA 2020 Award Nominations

BIAPA is requesting nominations for the 2020 Awards. Nominations will be accepted until Friday, September 10, 2020. Awards will be presented during the 2020 BIAPA Annual Business Meeting scheduled virtually for October 15, 2020 at 3:00 PM.

We are accepting applications for the following categories:
  • The Dan Keating Pioneer in Brain Injury Award
  • The Dennis Minori Family Tribute Award
  • The John Sears Inspiration Award
Please click here for the application and award details.

BrainSTEPS Social Media Outreach Manager

BIAPA will be hiring a part-time Social Media Outreach Manager for the BrainSTEPS School Re-Entry Program. The purpose of this position is to increase awareness among parents and medical providers of the BrainSTEPS Brain Injury School Consulting Program and to promote referrals to the program.

For additional details, expected experience, and other requirements, please click here

Individuals interested in applying for this position should submit a letter of interest and a current curriculum vitae to Brenda Eagan-Johnson, BrainSTEPS Program Manager, at eagan-johnson@biapa.org. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

West Penn Hospital Rehabilitation Joins Pennsylvania Brain Injury Ambassador Program

The Pennsylvania Brain Injury Ambassador Program has transformed into a virtual program in response to COVID-19 and the restrictions placed on visiting hospitals. The Ambassador Program seeks to increase awareness about acquired brain injury and let people know there is hope and help available after brain injury. Brain Injury Ambassadors establish contact with families of persons who recently sustained a brain injury while they are still in the hospital, so that they can begin receiving the BIAPA Newsletter, HeadLines, and to let them know about the Brain Injury Resource Line (BIRL), which they can call if they need help in the future, after they are discharged.

Thank you to MossRehab, Magee Rehabilitation and Children's Hospital of Philadelphia who have collaborated in systematically talking with their patients about the Ambassador Program and enabling this contact.  This month, West Penn Rehab of the Allegheny Health System joined as a partner in this program, thanks to Dr. Thomas Franz and Elaine Brenneman, who serves as West Penn's liaison with the Ambassador Program.  If other acute rehabilitation hospitals around the Commonwealth are interested in participating in this valuable new resource, please contact Monica Vaccaro, BIAPA Director of Programs at vaccaro@biapa.org.


2020 Council on Brain Injury David's Golf Tournament & Awards

This article is submitted by the Council on Brain Injury,  BIAPA Corporate Partner.
Each year, CoBI holds a golf tournament to raise funds for its grant-making program, which supports brain injury programs and support groups across the state! Join us on September 22, 2020 at Penn Oaks Country Club in West Chester, PA for a day of golf, great fun, and camaraderie---this event will be held in accordance with all virus-related precautions!

The 2020 CoBI awards for leadership and dedication in the field of brain injury will also be presented. This year, CoBI has recognized Cristabelle Braden as our individual award winner for her dedication to bringing a message of hope and inspiration to fellow survivors of brain injury through the example she sets, her music, and as the founder of Hope after Head Injury.

The Brain Injury Association of America, will receive the organization award for their exceptional guidance to state affiliates and service providers on how to safely provide services and support the brain injury community during the COVID-19 Pandemic and over their 40 year history. The BIAA staff is pictured here.

This year’s John Savelloni Learn to Swing Golf Clinic will be virtual this year. Special thanks to sponsors including USI, Alliant, Piazza Subaru of Limerick, Oliver Heating & Cooling, and Astor, Weiss, Kaplan & Mandel, LLP and ReMed in partneship with Learning Services.

Details can be found at www.councilonbraininjury.com/david-s-drive-1 or by contacting Joanne Finegan at 484-329-8811 ext. 145 for information or any questions.

Details can be found on the CoBI website by clicking here, or by contacting Joanne Finegan at 484-329-8811 ext. 145 for information or any questions.

Support Group Corner

BIAPA held our third Pop Up Support Group ZOOM meeting on Thursday, August 27th at 5:00 PM.  The group opened with our special guest, Tom Sweitzer, a music therapist and director of A Place to Be. Tom led the group in a song, inspired the group to bring music into their lives, and gave examples of how music can be used as a tool for memory. 

The group was then opened up for discussion on the topic of successes and challenges experienced this summer.  Participants shared a wide range of challenges that we could all relate to - from managing moods, expressing  ourselves, and coping with misunderstanding of brain injury to dealing with illness.  There were so many successes - from writing an autobiography, getting back into therapy and getting back to work to finding joy in creating art and poetry.  Thank you to all who shared so generously.

The next BIAPA Pop Up Support Group is scheduled for Thursday, September 17th at 5pm.  We will send an email with the link to the group and to those on our distribution list.  If you'd like to be added to the group, send a message to survivorsupport@biapa.org. 

A full list of support groups with contact information for each is found on the BIAPA Website Support Group Listing page. If you are aware of groups that are meeting through video conferencing, please contact Candace Gantt, BIAPA Vice-President, at candace.gantt@verizon.net  so that we can let others know. 

Thank you to our Corporate Partners

Platinum Partners



Gold Partner


Silver Partners

Brain Injury Association of Pennsylvania
950 Walnut Bottom Road, Suite 15-229, Carlisle, PA
Phone: 717-692-5569, 1-866-635-7097


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