NASEM and Involvement of Monica Vavilala, MD as a Committee Member

Dr. Vavilala
Monica Vavilala, MD

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a major public health concern. As anesthesiologists, we care for patients with TBI during the acute and rehabilitation phases and have unique perspectives to provide ways to improve TBI care and outcomes. Dr. Monica Vavilala, University of Washington Professor of Anesthesiology and Pediatrics and Director of the Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center, is doing just that.

Dr. Vavilala, who is a TBI researcher and practicing anesthesiologist at Harborview Medical Center and past SNACC president, has joined a committee of experts commissioned by the U.S. National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) are gathering input from the public and private experts and stakeholders; exploring and assessing the public and military health burden of TBI; examining the current landscape of TBI research; and considering such issues as improving TBI systems of clinical care from acute care through rehabilitation. The report will provide a roadmap for advancing both research and clinical care over the next decade.

The committee hosted a large public workshop that examines the current landscape and explores future opportunities for collaborative action. Workshop participants included representatives of federal, state, and local governments; military and veterans' health stakeholders; the private sector; the academic community; patient advocacy stakeholders; the clinical community; philanthropic organizations; and traditional TBI research funders, as well as other relevant stakeholders involved in related fields aimed at advancing diagnostic tools, therapeutic trials, and systems of care. Presentations and discussions addressed the following topics:

  • Fostering biomedical research on TBI;
  • Accelerating translational and clinical research on TBI;
  • Delivering breakthroughs in TBI treatments and
  • Improving TBI systems of clinical care from acute care through rehabilitation.

The study, including the workshop, will address a range of populations affected by TBI and related goals, including improving readiness, retention, return to service, and prevention of long-term sequelae in military populations; and improving return to play and work, and prevention of long-term sequelae in sports participants, older adults who have fallen, individuals affected by traffic/vehicle injuries, and other civilian populations.

Based primarily on the workshop presentations and discussions, supplemented by an additional literature review as appropriate, the committee will develop a report, with recommendations, that identifies major barriers and knowledge gaps that are impeding progress in the field:

  • Highlights opportunities for collaborative action (both intergovernmental and public-private) that could accelerate progress in TBI research and care; and
  • Provides a roadmap for advancing both research and clinical care that would guide the field over the next decade.

The report will be released in early 2022. For more information, please visit:

Dr. Flexman Named Inaugural Vice Chair for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI)

Dr. Flexman
Alana Flexman, MD FRCPC

Alana Flexman, MD, FRCPC has been selected as the inaugural Vice-Chair for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) for at the Department of Anesthesiology, Pharmacology and Therapeutics at the University of British Columbia (UBC), Vancouver, Canada.

Dr. Flexman is a UBC Clinical Associate Professor and is working at St. Paul’s Hospital/Providence Healthcare. She is an Associate Editor of the Canadian Journal of Anesthesia and the Journal of Neurosurgical Anesthesiology. Dr. Flexman is also the Vice President for Education and Scientific Affairs for the Society for Neuroscience in Anesthesiology and Critical Care (SNACC).

Dr. Nada Appointed as the Chief, Regional Anesthesia at Stony Brook University

Dr. Nada
Eman Nada, MD

Eman Nada, MD, has been appointed as the Chief, Regional Anesthesia at Stony Brook University.

Dr. Nada is an Associate Professor at the Department of Anesthesiology, Renaissance School of Medicine, Stony Brook University, and is an active member of the SNACC Trainee Engagement Committee.

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