March/April 2016

             Help Today. Independence Tomorrow.
Here We Grow Again! Introducing....... 

Wheelin' and Heelin' 
Neuro Assistance is taking the next step in making sure our clients remain independent by launching a new program aimed at training our client's dogs to assist with small, in-home tasks such as picking up a dropped object, heeling to a wheelchair or turning off a light. Our program is NOT training service dogs but rather taking our client's existing dogs and providing training which will enhance independent living. Our test subjects are pictured above - Bentley, a ten-year old mixed breed dog and Maddie, a two year old basset hound. Both dogs belong to Bev Olson our Co-Founder and are being trained by Barb Gadola of Distinctive Dog Training of Keller. After just four training sessions (and lots of homework), Bev is amazed by the progress both dogs have made. We'll give you an update in our next newsletter. 

Watercolor painting by Lora Smith, Development Manager
The Facts About Spinal Cord Injuries....A Few Statistics 

General Statistics:
  • 12,500 new traumatic spinal cord injuries each year in the USA. 
  • Approximately 80% occur in men, in the USA. Approximately 240,000 to 337,000 people in the USA living with chronic SCI, caused by a trauma.
  • Average age at the time of injury is 42 years old.


Taken from  The Miami Project
Meet Our Clients! 

America, age 15, was born with spina bifida. America's mother was having problems with her health insurance and her coverage was temporarily lost. America's mother was unable to afford the out-of-pocket cost of her monthly supply of catheters so NAF is going to pay for the next 3 month supply while her mother gets her coverage reinstated.

Jaidyn, age 13, was born with a congenital lipoma impacting her spinal cord and scoliosis among other problems. Jaidyn began using catheters about 4 months ago and her insurance has denied funding for those supplies. Jaidyn's parents are in the process of appealing that denial but in the interim, they aren't able to afford the out-of-pocket expense. NAF will be providing funding for her catheters for the next 3-6 months to allow Jaidyn's parents to complete the appeals process with their private insurance plan.

Willie, age 19, was visiting Kansas City when he sustained a traumatic spinal cord injury from a gunshot wound. His Case Manager at the University of Kansas Medical Center contacted NAF for help getting him some of the items he needed when he returned back home to North Texas. NAF provided specialized transfer bench and shower chair for use in his bathroom at home. His insurance will not cover those items because they are considered "bath aids" and therefore "unnecessary". This is the general rule of thumb with all insurance coverage, however, Willie can't take care of himself or bathe without them. It's definitely a gap in the system.
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Chip Implant Provides Quadriplegic with Regained Function. 
Scientists continue to make amazing discoveries and advancements for those of us living with para- or quadriplegia. Just recently an article came out detailing the story of a new chip which can be implanted into the brain and allows for the possibility of regained function. 
The article states "On Wednesday, doctors reported that Mr. Burkhart, 24, had regained control over his right hand and fingers, using technology that transmits his thoughts directly to his hand muscles and bypasses his spinal injury. The doctors' study, published by the journal Nature, is the first account of limb reanimation, as it is known, in a person with quadriplegia". 
The technology is not a cure for the disability, but another stepping stone to limiting one's inabilities caused by para- or quadriplegia. 
To read more about the study, how it works, and the continual advancements made by doctors and scientists across the nation visit The New York Times
Wheelchairs don't define us....they MOVE us


Join us for our 2nd Annual 
Cinco de Mayo Run, Walk & Roll 
on May 7th in McKinney

We had a great crowd last year and can't wait to do it again. Do the 1 Mile, 5K or 10k - use your feet, your wheelchair or your handcycle! Tech shirts for all entrants!

If you'd like to volunteer at this event, please contact us at

For more info or to register, click Here

Our Friend, Jane

You may have seen Jane on the 10:00pm news on April 5.  She's 31 years old and came all the way from Kenya to Dallas to be at Baylor Institute for Rehab - they're a world class facility! Jane was leaving church in Kenya when she was robbed and shot and she's now paralyzed. Jane's going to be moving in with her sister in Arlington and Neuro Assistance was proud to provide her with a donated chair and custom cushion. Jane was a journalist in Kenya and we really enjoyed meeting her today. She has such a positive outlook on life!
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Designing an Accessible Home to Meet Your Needs

Dr. Rosemarie Rossetti suffered a spinal cord injury when a tree fell on her. Upon returning home she stated that her home intensified her disability. "Work spaces were too high, doors were too narrow, the carpeting was too thick, and I didn't have any privacy".  
How many of you can relate to feeling that same way when returning home after a spinal cord injury? Dr. Rossetti and her husband did a major transformation of their home to meet her needs and have allowed a virtual tour to be placed online at
If you are considering making some changes to your home, take a look at Dr. Rossetti's  article and take the virtual tour of her home. Perhaps she will not only inspire you, but prove to be very helpful in some interior design tips. 


We're raising money with Bravelets! They have beautiful bracelets for men and women as well as "Be
 Bra ve" earrings and necklaces. With each one you purchase, $10 is donated to NAF. 


Support Our Year Round Sponsors
NAF has some of the most amazing sponsors in the world. Because of their generosity, we are able to help so many people with life changing injuries. Please remember them when you're shopping or choosing services.

We Need Your Help

Donate ~ Sponsor ~ Volunteer

Change lives; make a difference.

Your $25 donation will help provide clean catheters to a paralyzed child for one month when their insurance won't cover the expense.


Your $100 donation will help build a wheelchair ramp so we can get our clients out of rehab and through their front door at home.


Your $200 donation will help widen the doorways in their homes so their wheelchair can fit through the bathroom door. Insurance doesn't covers home modifications.


Your $500 donation will help provide life-changing medical equipment: wheelchairs and specialized shower chairs, etc. Most insurance only covers a small part of wheelchairs, if any, and no "bathing aids" are covered. 




 No donation is too small. Click here for information. 

Contact: Cindi Cooperman



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