EDITORIAL

Changing misconceptions about brain injuries

Posted 3/10/21

To the Editor: The Brain Injury Association of Rhode Island (BIARI) is proud to join with the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) and advocates across the country to celebrate March as Brain Injury Awareness Month. It is important to change common

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EDITORIAL

Changing misconceptions about brain injuries

Posted

To the Editor:

The Brain Injury Association of Rhode Island (BIARI) is proud to join with the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) and advocates across the country to celebrate March as Brain Injury Awareness Month. It is important to change common misconceptions about brain injury; educate the public on the incidence of brain injury and the needs of individuals who are injured and their families; and offers tools and information for anyone to advocate for access to care after brain injury.

More than 5.3 million Americans are living with brain injury-related disabilities at a cost of more than $76.5 billion (in 2010 dollars) each year. The number of people who sustain brain injuries and do not seek treatment is unknown. What we do know is that at least 5.3 million Americans live with a traumatic brain injury-related disability. More than 3.6 million people sustain an acquired brain injury (any injury to the brain that is not hereditary, congenital, degenerative, or induced by birth trauma each year).

That's one in every 60 people. Few are aware of it, but head injury kills more Americans under the age of 34 than all other causes combined!

People living with brain injuries want the same things we all want: they want to be defined by who they are as people, not by their injuries. With proper acute care, early and intensive rehabilitation, and sufficient long-term supports, these individuals and their families can face the challenges – and successes – that each day brings.

As the only organization in the state dedicated solely to brain injury, BIARI actively collaborates with state and private entities to educate survivors, family members, professionals and the public on all aspects of brain injury prevention, treatment, and support needs. We operate a Resource Center to improve access to information, and to enhance the effectiveness of agencies and service providers who work with survivors of brain injury.

BIARI provides training and educational programs to schools, professionals, businesses and the community at large. We are inspired by the resiliency and dedication of those we serve to live as full lives as possible.

If you or someone you know has a brain injury share your story, educate those you know, or speak to your elected officials about issues affecting people with brain injuries. If you would like more or need assistance contact BIARI 401-228-3319 or visit our website at biari.org to learn more.

Debra Sharpe

Executive Director

Brain Injury Association of Rhode Island

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