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Brain Injury Alliance of Utah and University of Utah Educational Conference on Brain Injury: Focus on the Mind Body Connection in Recovery

The goal of this application is to support an educational and outreach activity, an educational conference for providers, survivors, and family members of brain injury. The conference will be a forum for community engagement and education and will bring together top researchers and care providers with survivors and family members in an engaging and integrated format. Active discussion and interactions between stakeholders will facilitate transfer of ideas and action items. The 2 day conference will be held in Salt Lake City in November 2020. Featured sessions will include discussions and interactive workshops. We will have a keynote speaker and interactive discussions addressing the question "can diet affect recovery from brain injury?" Current research on the effects of diet and the microbiome on recovery after brain injury will be discussed. Another hot topic will be "CBD or not CBD: a discussion on medical cannabis" featuring a panelist from the Utah Medical Cannabis Program. We will also feature interactive training sessions on intimate partner violence and brain injury for all stakeholders to provide training and resources in approaching this difficult path to recovery. The project directly addresses the University of Utah strategic goal 1 in developing and transferring new knowledge in that the conference will engage participants at all levels in new learning. The project addresses goal 3 by engaging communities to improve health.

Current Status

The goal of this community-centered project was to host an evidence-based conference on brain injury to better educate brain injury professionals, educators, thrivers/survivors, care partners, and community members. The two-day conference was held virtually and included renowned experts from across the United States. The first day of content featured two workshops which focused on critical issues facing our communities. The return-to-learn workshop focused on brain injury in school-aged children with guidance on how to evaluate, treat, and support school-aged children with brain injury through the school system. The workshop on intimate partner violence and brain injury discussed the challenging and unique aspects of brain injury in the setting of intimate partner and family violence. The second day sessions were themed the mind-body connection in brain injury and featured world class lectures on many engaging topics including effects of diet and microbiome on brain injury recovery, an epidemiological assessment of health trajectories and brain injury recovery, and multimodal treatment paradigms to promote recovery from brain injury. The conference experience record registrations, over 500, from a wide array of community partners. The evaluations of the program were overwhelmingly positive. The generous support of the 1U4U Innovation program made this event a great success.


Candace Floyd
School of Medicine
Division of Physical Med/Rehab
Project Owner

Elaine Clark
College of Education
Educational Psychology

Jeremy Davis
School of Medicine
Division of Physical Med/Rehab

Summer Rolin
School of Medicine
Division of Physical Med/Rehab

Yana Suchy
College of Social and Behavioral Science

Elisabeth Wilde
School of Medicine

Project Info

Funded Project Amount

traumatic brain injury, education, conference, health promotion, mind body connection, sleep, diet, intimate partner violence, resources, community engagement

Project Status
Funded 2020

View poster (pdf)
Last Updated: 12/7/22