This week, the Toronto Star Editorial Board endorsed MP Alistair MacGregor's (Cowichan-Malahat-Langford) Private Member's Bill C-277 the National Strategy on Brain Injuries Act.
Brain injuries are, in fact, implicated in many of our most pressing social problems, yet they frequently go unnoticed. They have come to be known as "invisible disabilities" and a "silent epidemic," unseen and unheard threats to lives and livelihoods.
Most acquired brain injuries are preventable or treatable, however, and British Columbia NDP MP Alistair MacGregor is aiming to provide us with the tools to do just that.
Last year, MacGregor introduced a private member's bill calling for a national strategy on brain injuries, and last week, members of the Canadian Traumatic Brain Injury Research Consortium joined MacGregor in urging the federal government to support the plan.
Among other things, the strategy would promote preventive measures, improve research, data collection and training of health care professionals, create national guidelines on prevention, diagnosis and management, and raise public awareness.
Consequently, Brain Injury Canada and the Canadian Traumatic Brian Injury Research Consortium are encouraging the federal government to declare moderate to severe traumatic brain injury a chronic condition.
That could complement a national strategy devoted to raising awareness and improving research, training and treatment. And a national strategy could in turn help to inform and improve our efforts to address some of our most intractable social problems.
To be sure, it won't magically cure all of our social maladies. But given the profound role brain injuries play, it could go a long way toward alleviating them.
-Star Editorial Board