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Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence

Visit the Provider Resources page

 

Welcome to the new Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence website. Here, you'll find TBI clinical tools, educational resources, and research information. Check out our content, and don't forget to bookmark your favorite pages. We hope you enjoy it!

Our mission remains the same: TBICoE will continue to promote state-of-the-science traumatic brain injury care from point-of-injury to reintegration for service members, veterans and their families. Our goal is to help the Defense Health Agency provide optimal patient outcomes, leading to a medically ready and a ready medical force.

TBICoE Mission

As the TBI Pathway of Care manager within the MHS, the Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence promotes state-of-the-science care from point-of-injury to reintegration for service members, veterans, and their families to prevent and mitigate consequences of mild to severe TBI.

Learn more about our mission.

TBI and the Military

Traumatic brain injury is a significant health issue which affects service members and veterans during times of both peace and war. The high rate of TBI and blast-related concussion events resulting from current combat operations directly impacts the health and safety of individual service members and subsequently the level of unit readiness and troop retention. The impacts of TBI are felt within each branch of the service.

TBI, Service Members, and Medical Providers

Frequently Asked Questions

The Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence FAQs provides answers to questions we are regularly asked about the organization and its mission. 

Q1:

What is the Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence?

A:

TBICoE is a congressionally mandated collaboration of the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs to promote state-of-the-science care from point-of-injury to reintegration for service members, veterans, and their families to prevent and mitigate consequences of mild to severe traumatic brain injury.

Q2:

Why does DVBIC now prefer TBICoE?

A:

The preferred name Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence (TBICoE) aligns with the other centers of excellence within the Defense Health Agency’s Research and Development Directorate, under which the TBICoE operates. This name reflects the mission of the TBICoE, and will make for easy identification with internal and external stakeholders in identifying the organization and its mission.

Q3:

Will this name change adjust the mission or functions of TBICoE?

A:

No. TBICoE will continue to oversee and conduct TBI clinically relevant research addressing gaps in TBI knowledge for our service members and veterans who have sustained a TBI. Additionally, TBICoE continues to provide training and materials to military medical personnel for diagnosis, prevention and treatment of TBIs. TBICoE develops, provides and distributes educational materials for both military and civilian providers, families, service members and veterans. Gathering and analyzing data mandated by Congress and the Department of Defense for reports will also continue.

Q4:

Where is TBICoE located?

A:

Our headquarters is located in the Washington, D.C. metro area. TBICoE supports a multi-center network of military treatment facilities and Department of Veterans Affairs medical centers nationwide and in Germany. At these facilities, regional education coordinators have resources and conduct education for medical providers, service members, veterans and their families. TBICoE conducts and supports traumatic brain injury clinical investigations at these collaborator facilities as part of the TBICoE research program.

Q5:

How do I find TBICoE resources?

A:

For providers, visit the Provider Resources section of the TBICoE webpages. There, medical personnel can find TBI clinical recommendations, support tools and education materials. Visit the TBICoE Research page and download the latest TBI Hot Topics Bulletin for the latest trends in TBI research.

The Patient and Family Resources section of TBICoE has fact sheets, patient guides for recovery, and family and caregiver guides.

TBICoE materials are available by download only. We will continue to develop and update TBI clinical and educational products, so bookmark the pages and check back often or sign up for the TBI Providers Brief or TBI Resources Updates email news to stay informed.

Q6:

Will TBICoE continue to collaborate with the VA on TBI issues?

A:

Yes, TBICoE will continue its 28-year historical relationship with the VA. In fact, TBICoE has ongoing clinical research or educational activities that are coordinated through the VA and TBICoE.

Q7:

Does TBICoE or its network personnel provide medical care?

A:

No, TBICoE does not provide medical care or referrals, but we do offer resources to help patients, their families and caregivers learn more about TBI together with their medical provider. Visit the Patient and Family Resources page to find fact sheets and other TBI patient and caregiver guides. TBICoE's outreach initiative, A Head for the Future is a resource to learn how to prevent, recognize and recover from a brain injury, and hear stories from TBI Champions.

Q8:

How do I contact TBICoE?

A:

If you have a question or concern about TBICoE or any of the products, please email us!

Q9:

What if I need immediate TBI medical help, advice, or information?

A:

You can find support 24/7 through the websites and numbers listed below.

National Resource Directory

The national resource directory connects wounded warriors, service members, veterans and their families with services and resources at the national, state and local levels to support recovery, rehabilitation and community reintegration.

Military/Veterans Crisis Line

800-273-8255, and press 1

Crisis Line, text-messaging service, and online chat provide free VA support for all service members, including members of the National Guard and Reserve, and all veterans, even if they are not registered with VA or enrolled in VA health care.

Military OneSource

800-342-9647

Help for active duty military and their dependents, including 12 free non-medical counseling appointments.

VA’s Polytrauma/TBI System of Care

 VA’s Polytrauma System of Care provides a full range of medical and rehabilitation services for all enrolled veterans and for service members covered by TRICARE authorization, who have sustained polytrauma, TBI or other acquired brain injury. Click on this link for admissions and referrals.

Department of Veterans Affairs Customer Service Hotlines

Health Care:  877-222-8387

Benefits:  800-827-1000

White House VA Hotline

Open 24-hours a day, 365 days a year

855-948-2311

VA’s first non-clinical, non-emergency, around-the-clock call center. It provides Veterans a supplemental option to report issues if they are not being addressed through VA’s normal customer service channels. Hotline agents answer inquiries, provide directory assistance, document concerns about VA care, benefits and services, and expedite the referral and resolution of those concerns.

Vet Centers

Vet Centers are community-based counseling centers that provide a wide range of social and psychological services, including professional readjustment counseling to eligible veterans, active duty service members, including National Guard and Reserve components, and their families. Readjustment counseling is free of charge and anonymous, and is offered to help make a successful transition from military to civilian life or after a traumatic event experienced in the military, including TBI. Does not require enrollment in VA health care.

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Acute Concussion Pathway of Care: MACE 2 and PRA Training

Publication
10/26/2021

The Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence is hosting a combined Military Acute Concussion Evaluation (MACE 2) and Progressive Return to Activity (PRA) clinical recommendation virtual training.

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Assessment and Management of Dizziness and Visual Disturbances Following Concussion/Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

Publication
10/22/2021

This clinical recommendation provides medical staff with a single, comprehensive reference for the assessment and management of dizziness and visual disturbances following mild TBI/concussion. Dizziness and visual disturbances often present with overlapping symptoms and should prompt a provider to perform a visual and dizziness—or vestibular—assessment.

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Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | Provider Resources | TBI Resources | Centers of Excellence

Improving Relationships after TBI

Publication
10/21/2021

Flier for the Interactive Relationship Building Workshop for Active-Duty Military and Veteran TBI Caregivers and Families: This flier provides information on TBICoE's educational session for caregivers of active-duty service members and veterans who have sustained a TBI. In addition to sharing caregiver resources and current research initiatives, webinar topics will also include relationship building strategies, improving communication and addressing intimacy after TBI.

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TBI Hot Topics Bulletin, September 2021 Edition

Publication
10/19/2021

The TBI Hot Topics Bulletin is a product of the TBICoE research branch and provides a quarterly summary of TBI research relevant to health care providers. This issue covers research published April to June 2021.

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Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | TBICoE Research | Provider Resources

2000-Q2 2021 DOD Worldwide Numbers for TBI

Publication
10/14/2021

TBICoE is the Defense Department’s office of responsibility for tracking traumatic brain injury data in the U.S. military. Here you’ll find data on the number of active-duty service members—anywhere U.S. forces are located—with a first-time TBI diagnosis from calendar year 2000 through the second quarter of 2021. The data is also broken down by each branch of the armed services.

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Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence | DOD TBI Worldwide Numbers | Centers of Excellence | Traumatic Brain Injury

2021 Q2 DOD Worldwide Numbers for TBI

Publication
10/14/2021

TBICoE is the Defense Department’s office of responsibility for tracking traumatic brain injury data in the U.S. military. Here you’ll find data on the number of active-duty service members—anywhere U.S. forces are located—with a first-time TBI diagnosis in the second quarter of calendar year 2021. The data is also broken down by each branch of the armed services.

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NICoE, NHRC Team Up To Make CAREN Technology Portable

Article
8/12/2021
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Head-mounted display technology has become more affordable and accessible

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DOD TBI Worldwide Numbers At-A-Glance

Publication
8/10/2021

TBICoE is the Defense Department’s office of responsibility for tracking traumatic brain injury data in the U.S. military. The "DOD TBI Numbers At-A-Glance" provide a high level overview of TBI's sustained since 2000 and also show the data by severity and service branch.

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2021 Q1 DOD Worldwide Numbers for TBI

Publication
8/9/2021

TBICoE is the Defense Department’s office of responsibility for tracking traumatic brain injury data in the U.S. military. Here you’ll find data on the number of active-duty service members—anywhere U.S. forces are located—with a first-time TBI diagnosis in the first quarter of calendar year 2021. The data is also broken down by each branch of the armed services.

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2000-Q1 2021 DOD Worldwide Numbers for TBI

Publication
8/9/2021

TBICoE is the Defense Department’s office of responsibility for tracking traumatic brain injury data in the U.S. military. Here you’ll find data on the number of active-duty service members—anywhere U.S. forces are located—with a first-time TBI diagnosis from calendar year 2000 through the first quarter of 2021. The data is also broken down by each branch of the armed services.

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PRA Case Study Workbook

Publication
7/23/2021

This workbook, paired with corresponding PRA Training Video 8, is an interactive clinical case scenario to test your understanding in applying the Progressive Return to Activity. We hope this will help medical providers become more familiar with the PRA process when treating service members with concussion.

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PRA Training Video 1: PRA Overview

Video
7/22/2021
Thumbnail image of PRA training video 1, PRA overview.

In the first of TBICoE's Progressive Return to Activity (PRA) video training series, you will learn about the reasons for using a progressive return to activity process and receive an overview of the 2021 PRA algorithm and its associated tools. By the end of lesson one, providers will better understand the PRA process, and explain that process to service members diagnosed with concussion. Each video in the PRA training series is designed to support primary care providers' ability to manage concussion/traumatic brain injury (TBI).

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PRA Training Video 2: Six Major Changes

Video
7/22/2021
Thumbnail image of PRA Training Video 2, Six Major Changes

In this lesson we review the six major changes in the TBICoE's revised 2021 Progressive Return to Activity (PRA) Clinical Recommendation that differ from the original recommendation. The changes reflect the latest TBI research, and will make it easier for providers to manage the recovery process and return service members with concussion to full duty as quickly and safely as possible. Each video in the PRA training series is designed to support primary care providers' ability to manage concussion/traumatic brain injury (TBI).

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PRA Training Video 3: Understanding Relative Rest

Video
7/22/2021
Thumbnail image for PRA Training video 3, understanding relative rest

In this lesson we explain the differences between complete rest and relative rest in a staged concussion recovery process, and provide examples of activities that promote relative rest. The revised Progressive Return to Activity (PRA) Clinical Recommendation uses the term 'relative rest' to emphasize the importance of early introduction of physical and cognitive activities that do not provoke symptoms following TBI. Each video in the PRA training series is designed to support primary care providers' ability to manage concussion/traumatic brain injury (TBI).

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PRA Training Video 5: The Six Stages of the PRA

Video
7/22/2021
Thumbnail image for PRA training video 5, the six stages of the PRA

In this lesson, we cover the key activity objectives for each of the six stages of the Progressive Return to Activity (PRA) Clinical Recommendation and provide activity examples for each stage. Each stage is designed to gradually increase the intensity and duration of a service member's physical and cognitive activity as they advance in the PRA process. Each video in the PRA training series is designed to support primary care providers' ability to manage concussion/traumatic brain injury (TBI).

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