About Us

Neurotrauma Program Background

In 2002, the Hawaii State Legislature passed Act 160, enacting Chapter 321H of the Hawaii Revised Statutes which recognized the needs of individuals who suffer from the physical, cognitive, and behavioral consequences of neurotrauma. Neurotrauma is defined as a severe chronic disability of a person that is attributable to an injury to the central nervous system, such as traumatic brain injury (TBI), spinal cord injury (SCI), and is likely to continue indefinitely. The statute states neurotrauma can include other neurological dysfunctions but does not include substance misuse and abuse, Alzheimer’s disease, or the infirmities of aging. Stroke was included in the definition of neurotrauma because it is a preventable neurological dysfunction that can result in substantial limitations in the areas described in the statue.

The statute mandates the Department of Health, Neurotrauma Program to provide education on neurotrauma, assistance to individuals and families to identify and obtain access to services, and the creation of a neurotrauma registry through the Neurotrauma Special Fund. The Neurotrauma Advisory board (NTAB) and State Traumatic Injury Advisory Board (STBIAB) provides recommendations to the Neurotrauma Program on implementing this directive.

Neurotrauma Statutes and Rules

Hawaii Revised Statutes – Chapter 321H, HRS: Neurotrauma

Mission

Enhance partnerships to ensure individuals with neurotrauma and their family members have access to services and supports.

Vision

Individuals with neurotrauma will have healthy and meaningful lives.

Department of Health, Developmental Disabilities Division, Neurotrauma Program

The Department of Health is charged with setting a direction for a comprehensive system of support and offer services to survivors of neurotrauma.  Goals and objectives for the Neurotrauma Program Strategic Plan for fiscal years 2021-2023 were developed through Advisory Boards’ discussions and input from an online stakeholder meeting, held in May 2020. This Strategic Plan builds on the pervious Neurotrauma Strategic Plan for fiscal years 2018-2020. The Neurotrauma Program Strategic Plan for fiscal years 2021-2023 are:

  • Goal 1: In coordination with community partners, expand educational opportunities to the public sector on all neurotrauma injuries to increase awareness on the effects of neurotrauma and how to respond to an injury.
  • Goal 2: In coordination with community partners, connect providers to educational opportunities to increase awareness of neurotrauma and improve service delivery and outcomes for survivors of neurotrauma that they serve.
  • Goal 3: Expand survivors’, family members’, and caregivers’ connections to available resources in Hawaii.
  • Goal 4: Use data to identify the needs and service gaps for survivors of neurotrauma and family members/caregivers.

Neurotrauma Program PSA Video

Neurotrauma Program PSA Video Transcript – PDF Format