The CDC states that approximately 640,000 children 14 years and younger have TBI-related emergency department visits annually. Urgent care centers and primary care physicians also evaluate and manage patients with mTBI, so the actual numbers are even higher. Through all of these locations, currently the system of caring for these injuries is fragmented and the clinical training for evaluation, care coordination and management is limited.
One Mind has been spearheading the Screen-Inform-Prevent program since 2015 to improve the acute care management of children and adults who sustain a mild traumatic brain injury (TBI), which is also commonly referred to as concussion. Despite the rather benign sounding term, mild TBI is a major health concern with more than 2 million emergency department visits each year in the U.S. Concussion screening and management protocols have been developed for professional football and for the U.S. Department of Defense based on the best available evidence, but there is no standard practice for civilians. However, unlike these “top-down” organizations, implementation of knowledge in the U.S. healthcare systems is significantly more challenging, as described in a publication that followed the 2016 One Mind Summit.
To address some of the major challenges, One Mind has been working with David Wright at Emory University (a leading expert in emergency care for TBI) and Gerard Gioia at Children’s National Health System in Washington, DC (a neuropsychologist with expertise in adolescent TBI) and in 2018 successfully submitted a research proposal to the Center of Disease Control’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. The award provides funding to David Wright, the principal investigator, and his team for four-years ($550K per year; $2.2 million total), enabling them to engage patients, caregivers, clinical providers and schools in studying and refining an Emory-developed TBI Evaluation and Management (TEaM) Toolkit. The Toolkit is aimed at better diagnosis, management and treatment of mTBI. When the project is complete, the Emory team plans to implement their toolkit in health systems nationwide.
To demonstrate that for children and adolescents who sustain a mild TBI:
It is feasible to implement an evidence-based screening and management program into an electronic-healthcare record system for emergency departments, urgent care centers and pediatric and family care practice centers
Why One Mind's Support Matters
Head injuries are common place and the volume of people who are diagnosed with a mTBI (concussion) is exorbitant. We know that early identification, intervention and management both for mental illness and for mild traumatic brain injuries improves outcomes, we know the value of implementing best practices, and we believe that once best practices are established, they should be shared with as many clinical providers as possible.