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    Meet us in Atlanta! ACRM Conference Fall 2017

    THUR 26 OCT  7:00 AM – 8:00 AM:  Neurodegenerative Disorder Networking Group (NDNG) Business Meeting

    See Neurodegenerative Disease rehabilitation content here >>



    The ACRM Neurodegenerative Diseases Networking Group (NDNG) is a highly specialized professional networking group of clinicians, scientists, and other healthcare professionals interested in improving care and research for people living with neurodegenerative diseases such as, but not limited to Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, multiple sclerosis, Huntington’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Parkinsonism and many other related neurodegenerative disorders.

    Our Mission: to disseminate knowledge on evidence-based practice for improved health, wellness, and quality of life; and promote innovative biomedical research to identify ways in which these goals can be better accomplished through physical medicine and rehabilitation.


    One of the most valuable benefits of ACRM membership is the opportunity to participate in the many interdisciplinary special interest groups (ISIG) and networking groups. Please contact the NDNG Membership Officer, Hannes Devos, PhD, DRS or the NDNG Chair, Patricia C. Heyn, PhD, FGSA, FACRM to learn more about this networking group and ways to participate.

    Click the JOIN NOW button to learn more or contact Member Services at +1.703.435.5335 for personal assistance.





    Exciting Neurodegenerative Diseases Programming >>

    Attend the ACRM 2017 Annual Conference to Learn About the Latest Rehabilitation Research

    ACRM 2018 Call for Proposals

    OPENS Fall 2017

    The Program Committee invites proposals focused on research evidence and its translation into clinical practice for presentation at the ACRM 2018 Annual Conference in Dallas.



    Neurodegenerative Disease Rehab Content at the ACRM 2017 Annual Conference

    Join us at the ACRM Annual Conference, Progress in Rehabilitation Research this fall, for NONSTOP educational content focused on neurodegenerative disease rehabilitation. Plus, dive deep into intensive Pre-Conference Instructional Courses or Specialized Workshops on a wide variety of topics.

    Up to 42.5 hours of CE available. Learn More >>



    ABOUT THE NDNG Leadership

    The leadership of the Neurodegenerative Diseases Networking Group consists of a rich and diverse specialized group of professionals each contributing with their unique expertise to the activities of the NDNG. These entities include:


    Patricia Heyn


    Program Committee Liaison

    Patricia Heyn, PhD, FGSA, FACRM
    University of Colorado
    Anschutz Medical Campus
    Denver, CO

    Mark Hirsch


    Program/ Awards Officer

    Mark Hirsch, PhD
    Carolinas Rehabilitation
    Carolinas HealthCare System
    Charlotte, NC

    Deborah Backus


    Program Committee Liaison

    Deborah Backus, PT, PhD, FACRM
    Shepherd Center
    Atlanta, GA

    Shilpa Krishnan


    Early Career Networking Group Liaison

    Shilpa Krishnan, PT, PhD
    University of Texas Medical Branch
    Galveston, TX

    Hannes Devos



    Hannes Devos, PhD, DRS
    University of Kansas Medical Center
    Kansas City, KS

    Jake Sosnoff



    Jacob Sosnoff, PhD
    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
    Urbana-Champaign, IL

    Jeff Herbert



    Jeffrey Hebert, PT, PhD
    University of Colorado at Denver
    Denver, CO

    NDNG prides itself on having active volunteers who serve on task forces and committees, and as liaisons with other ACRM community groups.  The assistance of our members enables NDNG to help further the mission of this specialized group to inform others around the world of advances in rehabilitation research and clinical care for all individuals living with neurodegenerative conditions.

    If you are interested in volunteering your expertise and time to be a member of our unique and dynamic networking group, join one of our task forces or serve in a leadership role on the Executive Committee, please contact the chair, Patricia Heyn. 

    Read more about our task forces and committees below.




    Co-Chair: Anna DeJoya, PT, DSc, NCS
    TIRR Memorial Hermann
    Houston, TX

    Michele YorkCo-Chair: Michele York, PhD, ABPP-CN
    Baylor College of Medicine
    Houston, TX

    The Education Task Force has the goal to provide opportunities to members to develop and publish neurodegenerative related materials designed to provide consumer-friendly information on topics relevant to rehabilitation medicine, including basic background or overview as well as provide opportunities for members to work collaboratively in scientific peer-review publications. These can be targeted toward people with disabilities, caregivers, clinicians; policy makers and researchers. If you have an idea for a publication or want to join the NDNG Education Task Force, please contact Michele York.



    Co-Chair: Blake Burdett
    Shepherd Center
    Atlanta, GA


    Mark HirschChair: Mark Hirsch, PhD
    Carolinas Rehabilitation
    Charlotte, NC

    In 2016, the awards task force developed three NDNG Poster Awards and the Women in Neurodegenerative Disease Rehabilitation Science Award.  The NDNG Poster Award recipients are selected each year by the task force to promote and acknowledge excellence in rehabilitation research and scholarship.

    • NDNG Early Career Poster Award
    • NDNG Best Poster Award
    • NDNG Women in Science/Diversity Recipient

    To learn more about the award criteria and past recipients please follow this link.


    Julie FaietaChair: Julie Faieta, MOT, OTR/L
    The Ohio State University College of Medicine
    Columbus, OH

    The Alzheimer’s disease (AD) task force aims to develop and disseminate up-to-date and clinically relevant research on the treatment of both at risk and diagnosed AD populations. Building on the current body of evidence, the group works to produce meaningful literature for those living with AD, their caregivers, and the healthcare team. The primary goal of these endeavors is to enhance the quality of life for those affected by AD through production and dissemination of high quality and clinically-applicable research. Roles within the group will include co-authoring peer-reviewed journal articles, developing patient/caregiver targeted information and education pages, and producing scholarship on the work being produced by the task force. In addition, members will have the opportunity to participate in monthly meetings to discuss the status of current work and to deliberate on future aims. Outlined below are a number of anticipated projects to support the previously described goals:

    • Systematic review of the current literature on non-pharmacological interventions for the treatment of AD
    • Literature describing the role of rehabilitation professionals/clinicians in the treatment of AD populations
    • Information/education pages describing topics such as AD stages/symptoms, and environmental supports and community resources relevant to AD populations
    • Investigation into assistive technology, such as virtual reality, cognitive support, and environmental support technology, that has the potential to positively impact the quality of life and well-being of individuals affected by AD
    • Survey members for additional project ideas during annual /monthly meetings



    Chair: Cherie Hyder, Pharm D, JD









    • Early Career Networking Group Liaison: Shilpa Krishnan, PT, PhD
    • ACRM Program Committee Liaison: Patricia Heyn, PhD, GSA, FACRM
    • ACRM Program Committee Liaison: Deborah Backus, PT, PhD, FACRM
    • ACRM Communication Committee Liaison: Jacob Sosnof, PhD
    • ACRM Awards Committee Liaison: Mark Hirsch, PhD
    • International Networking Group Liaison: Mark Hirsch, PhD

    “How does ACRM Help Neurodegenerative Diseases?"

    Deborah Backus, PhD PT, FACRM
    Shepherd Center


    Don’t Miss NDNG Activities at the 2017 Conference

    The NDNG has prepared an exciting program for the ACRM Annual Conference. Unique expertise related to Parkinson's disease, MS, AD, ALS, HD, cognition, physical activity, and arts and sciences will be offered to our members. Stay tuned for full details!

    The NDNG Business Meeting will be held on THU 26 OCT at 7:00 AM. Come and meet your colleagues and bring your ideas!.

    The NDNG Lecture Luncheon featuring Dr. Erwin van Wegen is scheduled on FRI 27 OCT from 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM. Dr. van Wegen is associate professor of neurorehabilitation in the Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Medicine at the VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam.

    Dr. van Wegen’s research has been externally funded since 1999 by NINDS, NASA, NIAAA, the Dutch Parkinson disease Patient Society, ZonMw, Internationaal Parkinson Fonds, the European Research Council, and others.  His lab uses neurophysiologic techniques (mobile EEG, tDCS), body worn technology against freezing of gait, continuous activity monitoring, and iOS and Android app development for physical activity promotion in Parkinson’s disease.

    Dr. van Wegen gained an international reputation through work on the RESCUE Parkinson study (Research on Cueing).  He is well published in the field of neurorehabilitation research with publication of over 98 international papers and serves on several international editorial boards. He is a fabulous teacher of allied health care professionals within the Netherlands-based ParkinsonNet, and highly respected in the clinical and research community serving as the deputy-treasurer of the Dutch Society of Neurorehabilitation.

    Members in the Spotlight

    Shilpa Krishnan

    Shilpa Krishnan

    Dr. Shilpa Krishnan Receives NIDILRR Switzer Research Fellowship

    Congratulations to NDNG Secretary, Dr. Shilpa Krishnan, who was awarded the 2017 NIDILRR Switzer Research Fellowship to investigate a Patient-Centered Pressure Ulcer Outcome Preferences: A Mixed-Methods Study.



    Mark Hirsch

    Mark A Hirsch

    Ray of Hope Award honored Dr. Mark A. Hirsch and Dr. Sanjay S. Iyer

    This award is given annually by the Parkinson Association of the Carolinas to a person who has supported its mission “to serve as a resource for individuals and their families affected by Parkinson’s disease in the Carolinas through education, community outreach, and direct support.”

    The honorees Sanjay S. Iyer, MD,  Danielle Englert, MD, and Mark A. Hirsch, PhD, were presented the award during the 2016 Bill & Betty Ray Awardees Luncheon and Awards Ceremony in recognition of their dedication to research and treatment of Parkinson’s Disease and support of the Parkinson’s Association of the Carolinas.

    Nuerodegenerative Diseases -Related Information/Education Pages (I/EPs)

    These fact sheets are printed in the ACRM scientific journal, the Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation as tear-out pages. They are designed to provide consumer-friendly information on topics relevant to rehabilitation medicine, including basic background or overview, or brief how-to suggestions. They are targeted toward people with disabilities, their caregivers, or clinicians; and are designed as tear out and copy, or download pages to make them available to patients and caregivers. Check out these I/EPs focused on neurodegenerative disease-related topics.

    1. Coping With Caregiver Burnout When Caring for a Person With Neurodegenerative Disease: A Guide for Caregivers
    2. Physical Activity Recommendations for the Aging Brain: A Clinician-Patient Guide
    3. Decisions About Driving for Persons With Neurodegenerative Conditions
    4. What Is Mild Stroke?
    5. Brain Gaming: A User's Product Guide for the Clinician
    6. Pseudobulbar Affect
    7. Memory and Traumatic Brain Injury
    8. Cognitive Problems After Traumatic Brain Injury
    9. Emergency Preparedness for People With Disabilities
    10. Guide to Living With Aphasia

    Nuerodegenerative Diseases-Related Organizations and Societies

    Alzheimer's Association

    Alzheimer's Association national site – information on Alzheimer's disease and dementia symptoms, diagnosis, stages, treatment, care , support resources, research and grants.

    Alzheimer's Foundation

    Information about care, caregiving resources, training and education for both consumers and professionals.

    Dementia Society of America

    Dementia education for all-dementia conditions, for the families and caregivers. Present a variety of resources and programs and have several educational resources about dementia.

    Brain Health

    Learn about brain health and how you can make the most of your brain as you age website sponsored by the HHS ACL.

    NIA Health & Aging

    Offers a variety of research-based information and resources related to health and aging.

    Other Resources