Brain Waves: UAB Traumatic Brain Injury Model System Newsletter Volume 14 | Number 1

VOL 14 | NUM 1 2016 BrainWaves UAB Traumatic Brain Injury Model System Digital Newsletter Headline News The University of Alabama at Birmingham Traumatic Brain Injury Model System (UAB-TBIMS) provides Brain Waves twice annually as an informational resource for people with traumatic brain injury (TBI). UAB-TBIMS Program Director: Thomas Novack, PhD Brain Waves Editor: Phil Klebine, MA 529 Spain Rehabilitation Center 1717 6th Avenue South Birmingham, AL 35233-7330 Phone: 205-934-3283 TDD: 205-934-4642 Fax: 205-975-4691 WWW.UAB.EDU/TBI [email protected] /UABTBIMS /UABTBIMS /UABTBIMS The contents of this publication were developed under a grant from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR grant number 90DP0044). NIDILRR is a Center within the Administration for Community Living (ACL), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The contents of this publication do not necessarily represent the policy of NIDILRR, ACL, HHS, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government. ©2016 University of Alabama Board of Trustees. The University of Alabama at Birmingham provides equal opportunity in education and employment. UPDATE! In the last issue of Brain Waves, we asked you, our readers, to contact your federal legislators to prevent the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) from cutting reimbursement rates for Complex rehab technology (CRT) components. These components are medically necessary, individually-configured manual and power wheelchair systems, adaptive seating systems, alternative positioning systems, and other mobility devices that require evaluation, fitting, configuration, adjustment or programming. These cuts would have made it very difficult or, in most cases, impossible for people with severe disabilities to get the vital CRT components they need. The UAB Traumatic Brain Injury Model System is happy to report that Congress did pass the Patient Access and Medicare Protection Act that included a delay in the planned reduced pricing on CRT by CMS. First, we thank everyone who took action to help in this victory for people with severe disabilities. Second, we stress that the recently passed Act only delays the CMS from making cuts to CRT. We will likely have to fight this battle again soon. Thank you. - Phil Klebine, Editor. There are about 4 million parents in the United States living with a disability. Many of them have traumatic brain injury. Did you know that 35 States still include physical disability as grounds for termination of parental rights, even with no other evidence of abuse or neglect? The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation and the National Council on Disability have joined forces to equip people living with disabilities with information about their rights as parents by creating a “Know Your Rights” toolkit. This 16-page booklet covers issues parents and prospective parents with disabilities face every day, including adoption and foster care, reproductive health, child welfare, family law, and what is required by law from government services. It also features a wealth of resources to obtain more information, and spotlights what actions have been taken across the nation. The University of Minnesota Research and Training Center on Community Living has developed a Make Work a Part of Your Plan video and webinar series. The series was developed to deliver positive narratives about competitive integrated employment for individuals with disabilities. The series provides individuals, families, and professionals with information around raising expectations for employment, as well as participation, innovative ideas, strategies, best practices, and direction for the future of employment support. A research team has determined that adapted yoga is both feasible and beneficial for adults with stroke or traumatic brain injury. Subjects in a recently published study of adults with traumatic brain injury demonstrated improved balance, flexibility, strength, endurance and walking speed after participation in adapted yoga. The study underscores the belief that adapted yoga may offer additional benefits beyond those offered by traditional exercise for patients with traumatic brain injury.