As part of this initiative, NSCIA has begun distributing backpacks to people who are newly-injured or newly-diagnosed with disorders such as multiple sclerosis when they leave hospitals and rehabilitation facilities. The backpacks are filled with relevant information and consumer resources on mobility and medical equipment, disability benefits, accessible housing, leisure and travel, healthcare and much more.
“The backpacks have received a warm welcome from staff and patients,” says K. Eric Larson, senior vice president of membership and chapter services at United Spinal. “When we presented the very first backpack to a newly-injured patient at a rehab facility this past December, he was very appreciative and commented on what a great resource it was to help him along his journey toward recovery.”
Another recipient immediately went through the information included in the backpack and started using it right away. “You’re just pulling out surprises from inside of surprises!” he said.
As part of NSCIA’s long-term partnership with hospital members, the New Beginning backpacks are available to numerous hospitals and rehabilitation sites across the country to ensure that people with SCI/D are equipped with the knowledge to clear major hurdles when they return to their communities and are able to pursue the lives they choose.
New Beginning is supported by United Spinal’s wide array of programs and services, along with NSCIA’s large resource network and more than 60 local chapters and support groups across the country.
To learn more about New Beginning backpack program, please visit www.spinalcord.org/partners/backpack, or call 800.962.9629.