Partnering with designers, innovators and experts to bring innovative mental healthcare solutions to help Veterans at the VA Brain Trust: Pathways to InnoVAtion

The VA Brain Trust: Pathways to InnoVAtion is a groundbreaking annual public-private partnership, organized by the VA Center for Innovation and MyVA Partnerships, to identify, support and implement innovations to advance the mental health care for all Americans. Building on the leadership and trailblazing efforts of a number of talented VA Brain researches — including Dr. Ann McKee who is a leading authority on CTE and has testified before the Senate on CTE and head trauma — the VA convened some of the most distinguished voices in the field of brain health, including Veteran, Federal, Sports, Private Industry and Community partners.

By highlighting the themes of collaborative research, medical technology and sports innovation for player safety, Brain Trust participants discussed the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of Veterans, athletes and Americans in general — suffering from head trauma related types of injuries. The first day of the summit featured a moving discussion with SGT Cory Remsburg, alongside his parents and doctor, imploring the audience to engage with Veterans for their care. The highlight of the first day came when Secretary McDonald, motivated by the impassioned stories and clear evidence, announced that he would donate his brain to CTE research, joining NFL great Phil Villapiano and Olympic medalist Nancy Hogshead-Makar who, just moments before, announced they would donate their brains to support CTE research.

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Published on Medium May 9, 2016