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Notice to Readers: Brain Injury Awareness Month --- March 2007

March is Brain Injury Awareness Month, which is dedicated to helping the public learn more about brain injury and to improving the lives of persons living with brain injury. "Brain Injury: As Diverse As We Are" is the theme for this year's Brain Injury Awareness Month campaign, which will highlight the diversity of the causes of brain injuries and the persons who sustain them.

Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) contribute to a substantial number of deaths and permanent disabilities each year. CDC estimates that approximately 1.4 million persons sustain a TBI (1) each year in the United States. In addition, approximately 5.3 million persons in the United States (nearly 2% of the U.S. population) need long-term assistance with performing activities of daily living because of TBIs (2). Lifetime costs of TBI totaled $60 billion in 2000; this includes direct medical and indirect costs such as lost productivity (3).

In recognition of Brain Injury Awareness Month, the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA), with support from CDC, is offering educational kits about living with brain injury. The materials include 1) five booklets that provide information for persons with brain injuries and their families and caregivers, 2) fact sheets that describe the experiences of four persons who sustained brain injuries, 3) a poster that depicts the diversity of the causes of brain injuries and the persons affected by them, and 4) CDC's Facts about Traumatic Brain Injury fact sheet. These materials and additional information about Brain Injury Awareness Month are available from BIAA online at http://www.biausa.org/media.htm#march or by telephone at 1-800-444-6443.

CDC also assisted the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center in the development of a fact sheet and video documentary, "Understanding Traumatic Brain Injury," which features the recovery experiences of several military service personnel and their families. The video aims to raise awareness about TBI among the general public, active duty service members, and veterans. Additional information about the fact sheet and video is available online from the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center at http://www.dvbic.org/cms.php?p=education. Additional information about CDC's TBI-related activities, educational materials, and research is available at http://www.cdc.gov/ncipc/tbi/tbi.htm.

References

  1. CDC. Traumatic brain injury in the United States: emergency department visits, hospitalizations, and deaths. Atlanta, GA: US Department of Health and Human Services, CDC; 2006.
  2. Thurman D, Alverson C, Dunn K, Guerrero J, Sniezek J. Traumatic brain injury in the United States: a public health perspective. J Head Trauma Rehabil 1999;14:602--15.
  3. Finkelstein E, Corso P, Miller T, et al. The incidence and economic burden of injuries in the United States. New York, NY: Oxford University Press; 2006.



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