Message From The CMO
Gerard E. Francisco, M.D.
Chief Medical Officer
TIRR Memorial Hermann
Chair, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
McGovern Medical School at UTHealth
TIRR Memorial Hermann takes an active role at the local, state, national and international level in advocating for people with activity limitations and participation restrictions. We accomplish our objectives through programs like Independent Living Research Utilization, which has a long history of advocating for independent living; the Americans with Disabilities Act; home- and community-based services; and health issues for people with disabilities. Our 29-year-old Challenge Program helps people recovering from brain injury gain community reentry skills critical for the transition to independent living, school, work or volunteer activities. As Cory Smith’s story illustrates, the Challenge Program is successful at helping people of all ages maximize their potential.
In April, Matt Davis, M.D., who is featured in our cover story, flew to Washington, D.C., to represent the interests of spinal cord injury patients at a meeting of the National Quality Forum (NQF), which sets core measures for rehabilitative care. As physicians, researchers, nurses and therapists, we also advocate for our patients through research that advances technology and knowledge, and education of the next generation of rehabilitation specialists.
We have high expectations for our former patients. We encourage them to live fulfilling lives as independently as possible, and we uphold our part of the bargain by influencing public policy in their favor and ensuring that they have the resources they need to move forward with their lives.