Senator John Kerr from Goldsboro introduced legislation (Senate Bill 704) in 2003 calling for the establishment of the North Carolina Traumatic Brain Injury Advisory Council. The bill was ratified on May 22, 2003 and may now be found in General Statute 143B-216.65-66.
This legislation establishes a 29-member Advisory Council in the Department of Health and Human Services whose responsibilities include defining brain injury, promoting interagency coordination of efforts, studying the needs of persons with brain injury, coordination of prevention efforts, and making recommendations to the Governor, the General Assembly, and the Secretary of Health and Human Services regarding planning, development, and funding.
In addition to family members and survivors of brain injury, the Council will be comprised of individuals with clinical, programmatic, or policy development expertise.
Appointments to the Council are made by the Governor, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Senate Pro Tem, and the Secretaries of the Departments of Health and Human Services, Public Instruction, Insurance, and Administration. Ultimately, appointees will serve 4-year terms.
The Council was created by statute and meets each quarter.
Updates and Legislation
Division of Mental Health – Brain Injury Advisory Council
The Council was mandated by the North Carolina General Assembly in 2003 to review the definition of brain injury and the issues involved in expanding the definition of brain injury to include acquired brain injury rather than just traumatic brain injury. It is also following up on mandates to study the needs of people with TBI and their families, to make recommendations regarding the planning, development and implementation of a comprehensive system of services and to promote and implement injury prevention strategies. The Council helped direct the process for a formal needs and resource assessment in 2008. The Council developed a Call to Action paper for key legislative members making recommendations based on information gathered from a variety of sources. Licensure of facilities serving people with TBI is now another area of interest of the Council.
Since its inception, the Council has called on groups to work together on behalf of TBI issues. Its task forces have been working to review the continuum of services, to explore the possible use of trust funds for TBI and to support the need for a neurobehavioral unit in the service system. It works with DMH/DD/SAS to address these issues via the State TBI Plan.
Read updates to original statute.