Brain Injury Support and Strategies for Families Impacted by Childhood TBI

Period of Performance: 07/01/2017 - 06/30/2018


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Assistech Systems, LLC
EUGENE, OR 97401
Principal Investigator
Principal Investigator


? DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a leading cause of death and disability for children aged 1-19 in the United States. More than 60,000 children and adolescents are hospitalized annually in the U.S. after sustaining moderate-severe brain injuries from motor vehicle crashes, falls, sports, and physical abuse; more than 600,000 are seen in hospital emergency rooms and released. TBI often results in significant and permanent alterations in social, behavioral, physical, and cognitive functioning. Understanding these changes and developing skills to manage the challenges associated with them are essential for long-term positive outcomes for children with TBI and their families. The goal of this project is o produce the Traumatic Brain Injury Positive Strategies (TIPS) program, a comprehensive educational and training resource to help families improve their knowledge and skills in supporting a child with TBI experiencing cognitive, behavioral, and social challenges. The online product will include: (a) the TBI Resource Center, an extensive library of educational materials, information, and resources about childhood TBI, and (b) the Training Center, which will provide training in a range of evidence-based strategies within a problem-solving framework. Phase I of this project produced and evaluated prototype content, for the Training Center, including two Supporting Cognition modules and a Problem-Solving Basics module. The prototype was evaluated with 47 parents of children ages 5-18 with TBI. Significant results from the within-subject evaluation demonstrated gains in parents' self-efficacy, general TBI knowledge, and knowledge application. In Phase II, we will develop (a) an assessment module to identify key areas of parent concern, (b) additional training modules addressing cognitive, behavioral, and social domains, (c) the TBI Resource Center, and (d) functionality for hospital website integration. To promote knowledge and skill acquisition, the program will integrate evidence-based instructional design elements with video-based modeling, taking full advantage of the web's interactive capabilities. The program will be developed using an iterative process with an advisory board of rehabilitation professionals from three collaborating children's hospitals. We will determine the efficacy of the TIPS program in a randomized controlled trial with 216 parents of children with TBI. Program feasibility will be demonstrated by the achievement of significant program effects, a high level of program usage, and a high degree of user satisfaction.