Weinberg Family Cerebral Palsy Center honored at 2019 Cerebral Palsy Foundation Gala

(Debby Weinberg and David Roye, MD, accept one of the three Excellence Awards given out at the gala) 

The Cerebral Palsy Foundation hosted their 2019 Design for Disability Gala, on October 28, 2019. This annual benefit event provides an opportunity to recognize and celebrate the positive impact being made to improve the lives of people with disabilities through healthcare, research, and design. The Master of Ceremonies for the evening was Jason Benetti, an ESPN and Chicago White Sox Sports Announcer with cerebral palsy (CP).

The Weinberg Family Cerebral Palsy Center (WFCPC) was honored to be one of three Excellence Award winners of the gala. Specifically, the WFCPC was recognized for the commitment to lifespan care for individuals with CP.

“The Weinberg Family Cerebral Palsy Center is humbled and honored to receive this award,” said Dr. David P. Roye, Jr., Executive Medical Director of the Center. “We are proud to have a partner like the Cerebral Palsy Foundation, whose mission so closely aligns with our own a commitment to making a difference and improving the quality of life for people of all ages living with Cerebral Palsy. The resources that the Cerebral Palsy Foundation offers to patients and caregivers are integral to supporting the medical care provided by our faculty and staff. We look forward to working together in service to our patients and the cerebral palsy community, and want to thank the Cerebral Palsy Foundation for this tremendous honor.”

The event also featured an innovative line of accessible accessories created by a partnership between the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) Master of Fine Arts program in Fashion Design; Barbara Bradley Baekgaard, Co-Founder and Chief Creative Officer of Vera Bradley; and the Cerebral Palsy Foundation.

To learn more about the lifespan care offered at WFCPC for individuals with CP, click here.

To learn more about the Cerebral Palsy Foundation, click here. 

First Annual Adaptive Ski Trip

“I never would have thought it would be possible for me to ski!”

On Friday, March 1, 2019, the Weinberg Family Cerebral Palsy Center hosted our first annual Adaptive Ski Trip – it was an amazing success!  Seven patients, ages 8 to 28, and their family members joined us at Windham Mountain for a beautiful day of skiing, fun, and laughs.

The patients participated in ski lessons, led by certified instructors from the Adaptive Sports Foundation. It was the first time on the mountain for many of our patients, and one participant said “I never would have thought it would be possible for me to ski.” The patients had an incredible time, and the parents enjoyed watching their children be happy, engaged, and active.

A special thanks to faculty and staff at the Weinberg Center for making this day possible!

Lessons in Legislative Advocacy: Effective Strategies for the CP Community

When Dr. Annie Kaplan’s nephew passed away during routine oral surgery, she turned her grief into action. Through tireless advocacy, she helped pass Caleb’s Law in the California State Assembly, which is the first step in creating guidelines for dental anesthetic use on children. Recently, she shared her story and strategies for legislative advocacy in healthcare with physicians, faculty, and administrators from the Weinberg Family Cerebral Palsy Center and Columbia University Medical Center.
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Robot-driven Device Improves Crouch Gait in Children with Cerebral Palsy

Professor of Mechanical Engineering and of Rehabilitation and regenerative medicine at Columbia Engineering and a member of the Weinberg Family Cerebral Palsy Center Scientific Advisory Board Sunil Agrawal, PhD  has published a pilot study in Science Robotics. The study demonstrates a robot-driven device that improves posture and walking in children with crouch gait by enhancing their muscle strength and coordination.

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Weinberg Family Cerebral Palsy Center Hosts Dr. Darcy Fehlings

The Weinberg Family Cerebral Palsy Center hosted Dr. Darcy Fehlings for the 2016 Marilyn R. Lindenauer Lecture “Gaming/Interactive Computer Play and Cerebral Palsy – Let’s Play!” on June 22, 2016 at the Donald F. Tapley Faculty Club at CUMC. The Marilyn R. Lindenauer Distinguished Speaker Series highlights groundbreaking ideas and emerging technologies related to the care of patients with cerebral palsy.

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Self-Reporting Devices Help Patients with Nonverbal CP

When a nonverbal child is in pain, it’s usually the parent who acts as the interpreter. Does the child behave differently, or move in a different way? But being parents, they may be prone to bias. Healthcare professionals have therefore been seeking objective ways to assess pain and discomfort in nonverbal patients — such as intellectually developmentally disabled children with cerebral palsy — using self-reporting devices otherwise known as “augmentative and alternative communications” tools.

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Robotic Assistance Devices Help Pediatric CP Patients

Most people can reach for a cup of coffee that they are not looking at and successfully bring it to their mouths. But for people with cerebral palsy who have hemiplegia, that proprioceptive skill is missing. They may not reach the cup at all, or if they do grasp it with the involved arm, they may end up tipping the cup over. Moreover, the lack of control on the affected side often gets progressively worse as these patients learn to favor the dominant side. To improve that scenario in hemiplegic children with cerebral palsy, clinical investigators are teaming up with engineers to devise robotic assistance devices to “retrain their brains,” with the goal of enhancing function on the involved side of the body.

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