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ABC's Bob Woodruff to Be Recognized at National Academy of Neuropsychology 1st Annual Public Awareness Recognition Ceremony

DENVER, Nov. 2 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Academy of Neuropsychology (NAN) will recognize ABC journalist Bob Woodruff and his wife, Lee Woodruff, for their public education efforts on the topic of traumatic brain injury (TBI) among military service personnel returning from the Mid-East conflict. The event is scheduled to take place on November 13, 2007 at the opening of the NAN's annual conference held this year at the Westin Kierland Resort and Spa in Scottsdale, Arizona. Expected to speak at the event are former ABC cameraman Doug Vogt, who was injured alongside Mr. Woodruff in Iraq; Dave Woodruff, who serves as the Chairman of the Woodruff Family Fund; Congressman Harry E. Mitchell, who sits on the House Veterans Affairs Committee; Lt. Colonel Michael Jaffee and Kathy Hemlick from the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center; Brigadier General Donald Bradshaw, Commander, Southeast Regional Medical Command and Dwight D. Eisenhower Army Medical Center; Dr. Barbara Sigford from the VA Healthcare System; Ellen Embrey from The Pentagon and retired Vice Admiral Donald Arthur, former Surgeon General of the Navy.

Mr. Woodruff suffered a severe blast injury resulting from a roadside bombing in Iraq in early 2006 and since then has had a steady and impressive recovery. Through this process he and his wife have gained great insight and appreciation for those who are returning from the Iraqi conflict with traumatic brain injury. They recently released a book, "In an Instant: A Family's Journey of Love and Healing."

Prior to this event, a press conference will be held to mark the release of an executive summary of a position paper by an inter-organizational Military TBI Task Force on the role of neuropsychology and rehabilitation psychology in treating military veterans with TBI. The Task Force is made up of representatives from The American Psychological Association Divisions 40 (Neuropsychology) and 22 (Rehabilitation), The American Academy of Clinical Neuropsychology (AACN), as well as NAN.

Given the widespread use of explosives in current warfare in Iraq and Afghanistan, medical professionals are seeing an increase in blast injury induced brain trauma in military personnel returning from combat. According to the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center, in prior conflicts, TBI accounted for at least 14-20% of surviving combat casualties. Preliminary information from the current Middle East conflicts suggests that this number is much higher.

Many brain injury survivors have long-term disabilities including difficulties with memory and problem-solving, as well as stress and anger issues. "The hidden effects of brain injuries can surface long after the physical scars have healed," says Dr. William Perry, President of NAN. "People can experience behavioral, cognitive and even physical changes over time, which can be confusing for not only the individual, but for those close to them as well. Receiving assistance from professionals specializing in brain injury is key to understanding how best to help these military personnel and their families."

NAN is a professional association founded in 1975 to advance Neuropsychology as a science and health profession, to promote human welfare and to generate and disseminate knowledge of brain-behavior relationships. NAN has become a vibrant organization of the world's leading scientist-practitioners, academics, clinicians and researchers in the field of brain functioning. The association's current membership is over 3300 with representation by seventeen countries. The Annual Conference is attended by an average of 1500 neuropsychologists, neuroscientists, and neurologists.

SOURCE National Academy of Neuropsychology
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