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Acquired brain injury

A debate will take place in Westminster Hall on Thursday 6 July 2020 on acquired brain injury (ABI).  The debate will be led by Chris Bryant MP.

During recent debates in May and July 2019, Members raised a wide range of issues concerning ABI.These included highlighting the importance of neurorehabilitation services for individuals affected by brain injury and calls for further investment into these, the screening of prisoners for brain injuries, benefits assessment for those with brain injury and including brain injury in the code of practice for special educational needs. Members also discussed awareness training for education professionals, the risk of ABI occurring in sports and calls for agencies working with young people to work together to ensure that the needs of individuals with ABI are properly assessed.

The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Acquired Brain Injury and United Kingdom Acquired Brain Injury Forum (UKABIF) published their report, Acquired Brain Injury and Neurorehabilitation, Time for Change, in 2018. The report made a number of recommendations, including:

  • Rehabilitation prescriptions be made available to all individuals with ABI on discharge from acute care
  • A national review of neurorehabilitation
  • ABI should be included in the Special Educational Needs and Disability Code of Practice
  • Criminal justice procedures, practices and processes should be reformed to take into account the needs of individuals with ABI
  • Government should ensure that there is research to evaluate and improve assessment tools, develop diagnostic markers and gain a better understanding of the recovery and long-term risks of sport-related concussion
  • All benefits assessors should be trained to understand the problems that affect individuals with ABI

The Government published its response to the report in February 2019.

Ahead of Thursday’s debate, the UKABIF and the APPG published a January 2020 update. In it, they considered that “little progress has been made” following the two debates in 2018, and outlined a number of areas in which they would like to see action taken in 2020.

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