INPA attended The United Kingdom Acquired Brain Injury Form (UKABIF) 10th Annual Conference titled “Recognising and Understanding Brain Injury: Promoting the Need for Specialist Care” on Monday 5th November 2018. UKABIF’s chairman Andrew Bateman opened the conference with a warm welcome and emphasised the conferences aim to address the five elements of the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on acquired brain injury (ABI) “Time to Change” report (neurorehabilitation, education, criminal justice, sport-related concussion and welfare benefits system). This was achieved extremely well, and the talks were kick-started by Colonel Alan Mistlin who gave an overview of rehabilitation services currently and what changes are needed in the future to continually develop these specialist service. This was followed by Hannah Farrell, a Clinical Specialist Physiotherapist, who provided an update on Rehabilitation Prescriptions and reiterated the importance of the 3 parts to the best practice traffic: pre-injury employment, rehabilitation needs and rehabilitation destination.
Third to speak was Chris Bryant (Labour Party MP for Rhondda) who highlighted the work himself and others, such as INPA’s very own Chloë Hayward, had put into delivering the APPG on ABI “Time to Change” report and expressed the reasons behind his passion for ensuring change for future care and understanding in acquire brain injury (ABI). Talks were then given by Dr Ivan Pitman (Brain Injury Rehabilitation Trust; BIRT) on the work conducted by BIRT’s Brain Injury Linkworkers within a Woman’s prison, Professor Nathan Hughes (University of Sheffield) on the need for changes in the criminal justice system to help young people with ABI, and Emma Satyamurti (Leigh Day) on the reasonable adjustments to work places following a brain injury to assist the return to work.
To close the conference, a heart-warming and emotional tribute was presented in memory of Jeff Astle by his daughter Dawn. Dawn has campaigned tirelessly for research into repetitive heading of the ball in footballers and its relationship with concussion and longer lasted effects following her father’s death. She shared her father’s story, her journey through campaigning, the research currently being commissioned and the future aims of the charity set up in Jeff’s name, the Jeff Astle Foundation (www.jeffastlefoundation.co.uk).
The event finished with the award ceremony for the UKABIF Short Film Awards 2018. These short films were designed to enhance the understanding of ABI and four winners were announced with awards presented by Professor Nick Alderman, on behalf of the conference sponsor Elysium Neurological.
INPA were delighted to be able to attend the conference and thank UKABIF’s organisers for providing them the opportunity to present their latest work on the outcomes study as a poster.
There was great interest in the poster (“Optimising Measurement for Neurobehavioural Rehabilitation Services: A Multisite Comparison Study and Response to UKROC”) and it was a fantastic opportunity to discuss the findings with attendees to the conference. The poster, and the accompanying brochure, are available on the INPA website (https://www.in-pa.org.uk/research/) and additional information, comments and/or questions can be sent to Aimee Pink, INPA’s research officer (email@example.com).