Friday, August 27, 2010

Destination Success: Another Turn Made

TGIF everyone.
Yesterday was an eventful day. I was part of a congressional round table which was a success. I'm not writing details about it because there are names I don't want to disclose. What I can tell you is that wheels are moving to make progress in the establishment of effective rehabilitation programs. Congress and leaders are listening to our needs as brain injury survivors, caregivers, and providers. There was some faces of excitement among all, which tells me there is a strong team concept being built, which is the most important thing. It is gratifying to see that they are seeing the need of trasitioning this programs into a multidisciplinary teams. Thee team needs to be in one same location with a open and constant communication between providers. We are moving towards this. Among other topics addressed was program certification, transportation, quality of care, etc. All reactions were positive and it seems that there's going to be real changes within the brain injury community. I'm excited to see how we are all moving forward.
For many year, or I might say decades. The military and non-military brain injury communities have suffered under recognition. Why? Simply because instead of focusing on needs from the patient up, they focus on ongoing research on down. Sometimes I say I should have a broken leg intead of a brain injury because they could see it. Well, let's say I have a heart condition. Nobody can see that, right? If a heart disease patient goes undiagnosed, that person can die at any given point plus the quality of life for that person changes dramatically. Same with brain injuries, under recognition doesn't take away the abrupt change in life. That lack of recognition will lead to lack of care, lack of importance and it will have psychological effect on the pation. This effect add to the effects the injury brings with it. Many argue that a brain injury is nothing more than a headache or that it is all psychological. If you have suffered a brain injury you know the truth of the condition, which is very different from the truth commonly tried to force into the medical providers.
Who's in responsibility of ensuring this issues get corrected. It is too easy to point fingers, assign blame and get people in trouble. But the reality of the issue is that it is everybody's responsibility. Yes, I said everybody, that's to include the survivor and caregivers too. We are the voice of the injury. If you don't speak up how a problem is going to be identified. We are the main source of information. Many times when people complaint, in reality it turns into a "crying". To get issues corrected we have to take things to the right person, we have to get out of the "hallway talk" and bring things up to whoever needs to know. Oh, and by the way we have to become part of the solution. I have learned in life that just compaining most of the time will get you nowhere, but if you bring an issues and possible solutions the process will be simplified. The people that usually have the power to correct issues, have multiple problems they are trying to address as many others get added constantly.
We reached another milestone yesterday. The BI communities will benefit. Wheels are spinning. We are making progress.
My message to you today is: not only bring issues forward, be part of the solution.
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor or a lawyer. I'm not trying to be one. All I express is based on personal experience, opinion and ideas. I apologize if anybody is offended but this is just how I see things with well founded experiences.
See you all soon!!!


  1. How exciting. To actually be making a difference for others. I know in my experience, it makes it all more worthwhile and only gives me more determination. Good job. Keep up the excellent work!

  2. Thank you, thank you, thank you, for your work and your dedication. I am not in the Service (but thank you for yours -- and a big THANK YOU to all the other Servicemembers who give so much of themselves each and every day). It is so very important for this work to have visibility and strong voices advocating for it. There are so many of us who are on the fringes of a world we once inhabited freely, largely due to ignorance and neglect. The work you do and the words you write take us all one step closer to real help and real hope.

    Again, thank you for all you do.

    Stay strong.


  3. I am so glad that you got to the right people and got them to listen to you. I look forward to the people you saw putting their plans and yours, along with all ideas and suggestions into action. Good job, keep up the excellent work. Best wishes