Brain Injury Awareness Month

3/1/2014

WHEREAS, a traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a blow, jolt or bump to the head, or a penetrating head injury that disrupts the brain's normal function, often resulting in a lifetime of physical, cognitive and behavior challenges; and

WHEREAS, 2.4 million Americans, including 475,000 children, sustain a traumatic brain injury each year and as many as 5.3 million people nationwide live with long-term disabilities due to TBI, including stroke; and

WHEREAS, in the Commonwealth of Virginia, an estimated 190,000 Virginians live with disabilities caused by traumatic brain injury and stroke; and

WHEREAS, of the approximately 28,000 individuals who sustain brain injuries including concussions in Virginia every year, more than 5,000 are hospitalized, largely due to falls, motor vehicle crashes, assaults, sporting-related injuries, or occupational injuries; and

WHEREAS, TBI contributes to more than a third of all injury-related deaths in Virginia; and

WHEREAS, many of Virginia’s veterans suffer from TBI related to their service in the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars, and face ongoing challenges; and

WHEREAS, early, equal and adequate access to care greatly increases the overall quality of life for Virginians with TBI, enabling them to return to their home, school, work, and communities; and

WHEREAS, the Brain Injury Association of America promotes March as “Brain Injury Awareness” month with the motto, “Brain Injury: Anytime, Anywhere, Anyone,” to encourage awareness of the extent, causes, consequences, treatment, and prevention of TBI; and

WHEREAS, the Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services is the lead agency for coordinating brain injury services in the Commonwealth, and works in partnership with the Department of Veterans Services and its Virginia Wounded Warrior Program, the Department of Health, the Department of Education, the Department of Medical Assistance Services, and the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, as well as a statewide network of 13 state-funded brain-injury-services programs including the Brain Injury Association of Virginia;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Terence R. McAuliffe, do hereby recognize March 2014 as BRAIN INJURY AWARENESS MONTH in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.

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