Minnesota Spinal Cord & Traumatic Brain Injury Research Symposium kicks off during Super Bowl week

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More than 10,500 Minnesotans are living with paralysis from a spinal cord injury and 100,000 are living with disabilities from brain injury. No matter what the cause – whether it’s from a slip on the ice, a ladder fall or a car crash – these injuries are life-changing for patients and their families.

On Wednesday, January 31, 2018 from 1:00-5:00pm the first annual Minnesota Spinal Cord & Traumatic Brain Injury Research Symposium will showcase new and innovative research funded by the Minnesota Office of Higher Education Grant Program. The Grant Program funds research to discover treatment and rehabilitation with the aim of improving function in people with spinal cord and traumatic brain injuries. The Symposium takes place at the new HealthPartners Neuroscience Center, 295 Phalen Blvd. in St. Paul.

“Without a doubt, the path to hope for these courageous patients is research,” explains neurosurgeon Uzma Samadani, M.D., Ph.D., Rockswold Kaplan Endowed Chair for TBI Research at Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC), one of the moderators at the Symposium. “As a researcher, surgeon and clinician, it’s truly an honor to uncover interventions that will make an impact on the way we diagnose and treat these types of injuries.”

The Minnesota Brain Injury Alliance and Get Up Stand Up to Cure Paralysis worked with Minnesota legislators in July of 2015 to pass funding legislation for this program. Funding is split 50/50 between research focused on spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injuries. To date 21 research projects have been funded and will be showcased at the symposium along with select patient testimonials. In the next two years the Grant Program will award a total of $6 million for research.

Senator John Hoffman and Representative Tony Albright, who supported the legislation, will open the symposium followed by researchers from the Mayo Clinic, Hennepin County Medical Center, University of Minnesota and the Minneapolis VA Health Care System. In addition, speakers from Prevent Biometrics and TackleBar football will address current issues surrounding concussions.

Collaborative Minnesota partnerships like the ones featured at the Minnesota Spinal Cord & Traumatic Brain Injury Research Symposium are leading the way toward critical medical discoveries. For more information go to www.mnscitbiresearch.com/

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Emily C. Blomberg named HCMC’s Chief Operating Officer

Blomberg, Emily#216Emily C. Blomberg recently joined Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) as its new Chief Operating Officer (COO).

Blomberg joins HCMC from the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston where she was the Vice President of Health System Operations. Prior to her work in Texas she directed business development for the Department of Surgery at the University of Wisconsin Health in Madison. She earned a Master of Healthcare Administration and Bachelor of Science in Business from the University of Minnesota Carlson School of Management.

“Emily brings a unique, diverse skill set to our organization and we’re delighted to have her on board,” explains HCMC CEO Dr. Jon Pryor. “Her oversight of all Hennepin Healthcare System operations provides leadership that will help align our focus and structure with the future direction of healthcare.”

As COO, Blomberg is responsible for ancillary services at HCMC including Radiology, Pharmacy, and Laboratory, as well as operational and support functions including Information Technology,  Environmental Services, Facilities, Security, Nutrition Services, and the Enterprise Project Management Office.