Moss Traumatic Brain Injury Model System of Care

The Drucker Brain Injury Center at MossRehab has been designated by the federal government as a Traumatic Brain Injury Model System (TBIMS) since 1997.

Directed by Tessa Hart, PhD, and John Whyte, MD, PhD, the Moss TBIMS provides state-of-the-art, research and potentially lifelong treatments for persons with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and their families in the Philadelphia region and southern New Jersey. Innovative treatments are provided in a comprehensive inpatient and transitional outpatient rehabilitation program; community re-entry programs including a full complement of vocational services; two brain injury Clubhouses; a residential treatment facility; a Concussion Center; and a Neuro Mental Health Clinic specialized for the needs of people with TBI and other neurologic disorders. The TBIMS program exemplifies a culture of clinical research integration in which patients across the continuum of care are provided an opportunity to participate in cutting-edge studies to help advance scientific and clinical knowledge.

For more information about TBI research at MRRI, visit Dr. Hart’s lab page, Traumatic Brain Injury Clinical Research Laboratory, and Dr. Whyte’s lab page, TBI Rehabilitation Research Laboratory.

What Is a Model System?

A Model System is a center of excellence for both treatment and research related to a particular disability. It is funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR).

How Does a TBI Center Become a TBI Model System?

NIDRR gives Model System awards to centers with:

A strong track record of excellent clinical care and treatment. The Drucker Brain Injury Center at MossRehab provides a full continuum of care to persons with TBI and was one of the first centers of its kind on the East Coast.

The ability to carry out a program of research on outcome prediction and treatment. The Moss Rehabilitation Research Institute (MRRI) runs the Moss TBI Model System research program, which includes projects conducted locally as well as projects that represent collaborations between Moss and other Model System centers. In addition, information on MossRehab TBI Model System patients is added to the national database that contains data from thousands of people with TBI. This database is used to study the factors that predict recovery and outcomes of TBI. More information on the national database, including a full listing and syllabus describing all the data elements, may be found at the website of the TBI Model System National Data and Statistical Center at Craig Hospital: www.tbindsc.org.

A superior record of publications, presentations and other knowledge dissemination and teaching on TBI rehabilitation. The leaders and collaborators in the Moss TBIMS are nationally and internationally recognized for their professional and consumer outreach efforts. For more information on knowledge generated in the TBI Model System program, see the website of the Model System Knowledge Translation Center at American Institute for Research and the TBI Model System Research Publication Database.

What Does the Moss TBIMS Do?

Research Activities

The Moss TBIMS conducts longitudinal research in collaboration with other premier centers across the nation, and local research designed to improve TBI treatments and outcomes. For the 2012 through 2017 grant cycle, the Moss TBIMS is investigating the effects of theoretically developed SMS messages on levels of rewarding activity, with the ultimate aim of reducing depression and anxiety following TBI. We are also leading an international team to develop a behavioral scale to measure pain, for use with patients who are unable to communicate consistently. In a project begun in the 2007-2012 cycle, we are continuing to compare our patient outcomes to those of a collaborating hospital in Denmark which has longer and more intensive care than hospitals in the United States. The 2012-2017 Moss TBIMS also collaborates with other centers on time-limited modular studies of specific topics of high interest.

The Moss TBIMS includes patients with moderate to severe TBI, either penetrating or non-penetrating, who receive inpatient rehabilitation care at Moss and acute care at one of several local Trauma Centers. Participants receive on-going longitudinal follow-up and special opportunities for research participation. Patients with TBI who are not eligible for the TBIMS may also be invited to participate in research. Of course, the clinical continuum of care at the Drucker Center is available to all patients with TBI regardless of research participation.

Consumer Activities

In addition to its treatment and research activities, our Model System includes:
An Advisory Council made up of treatment staff, former patients and members of their families, and community members who are helping us improve our clinical services, research efforts, and educational/outreach activities.

Extra follow-up services to help us keep better track of patients who are out of the hospital, to make sure they get the services they need.
Conferences for persons with brain injury, their families, and professionals in the field, run by our

TBIMS in collaboration with other rehabilitation facilities and the Brain Injury Association of Pennsylvania. (www.biapa.org)

Information to benefit college students with TBI: In collaboration with Mary Kennedy, PhD, we compiled this Tip Sheet for College Disability Specialists and educators to help them work more effectively with college students who have executive function deficits due to TBI. The tip sheet explains the unique challenges experienced by students with TBI in a college environment and spells out strategies for helping them to succeed.

TBI Fact Sheets

The consumer materials listed below were produced through a collaboration between the MSKTC and the TBI Model Systems. This health information is based on research evidence and/or professional consensus and has been reviewed and approved by an editorial team of experts from the TBI Model Systems. The following topics are available:

Understanding Traumatic Brain Injury: Four Part Series

  • Part 1 – English (PDF: 230kb / 4 pages), Spanish (PDF: 226kb / 4 pages)
  • Part 2 – English (PDF: 237kb / 4 pages), Spanish (PDF: 263kb / 4 pages)
  • Part 3 – English (PDF: 202kb / 3 pages), Spanish (PDF: 222kb / 3 pages)
  • Part 4 – English (PDF: 220kb / 4 pages), Spanish (PDF: 246kb / 4 pages)

Alcohol Use After Traumatic Brain Injury

Balance Problems after TBI

Cognitive Problems after TBI

Depression after TBI

Driving after TBI

Emotional Problems after TBI

Infocomic – Emotional changes after TBI

Fatigue and TBI

Headaches after TBI

Memory and Moderate to Severe Traumatic Brain Injury

Returning to School After TBI

Seizures after TBI

Sexuality after Traumatic Brain Injury

Sleep and TBI

Infocomic – Sleep and TBI

Spasticity and Traumatic Brain Injury

TBI and Acute Inpatient Rehabilitation

Vision Problems After TBI


Contact Our Clinical Program

For clinical information call 1-800-CALL MOSS (1-800-225-5667) or visit the Drucker Brain Injury Center at MossRehab.

Read Brain-e-News

Our semi-annual newsletter keeps participants informed of research, clinical, and educational activities conducted here at Moss. Catch up on Brain-e-News.