With our current COVID-19 physical distancing protocols, it can feel like the year has passed with none of it’s usual markers for the passage of time. Traditions have been interrupted and holidays have been muted. At Progressive Rehabilitation Associates, there has been a long standing tradition to celebrate fall with costumes and potlucks. As the end of October drew near, it was announced; there would be some modifications, but our annual celebration could happen!
October 30th arrived, and the staff arrived at work bearing armloads of food and identities obscured by fun disguises. We could see the creativity as one of our staff members created a costume as if 2020 was a person, and another dressed up as a 2020-buster, spreading puppies and rainbows. We couldn’t help but smile as you saw an alien retrieving a human out of the corner of your eye.
This really reminded us of the special way Progressive Rehabilitation Associates works in the field of traumatic brain injury and persistent and chronic pain. Every client we connect with is an individual, with their own needs, traditions, culture, passions, and desires. We don’t treat shoulders or brains or knees, we treat people. We recognize the people who come here have been through tremendous challenges. We meet each person listening as closely as we can to their story, and through this careful listening, helping them find ways to rebuild the most important parts of their life.
This year, finding creative ways to help people connect with each other safely and engage safely in their traditions has been part of our treatment. And, like all good therapists, we start with ourselves, finding our own way through the pandemic, back to the social traditions that bring us joy and meaning.
Provider Spotlight: Greg Smith, PhD, Founder and Leader in Brain Injury and Chronic Pain Rehabilitation
Greg Smith, PhD is founder and CEO of Progressive Rehabilitation Associates, which has operated brain injury rehabilitation, pain management, work hardening and work conditioning programs since 1991, and has locations in Portland, OR and Vancouver, WA. Dr. Smith is well rounded with extensive experience for more than 30 years as a clinician, educator, author, researcher, program surveyor and leader.
Prior to launching Progressive, Dr. Smith was director of a multidisciplinary pain control program and then the director of the Health Psychology Department at Good Samaritan Hospital and Medical Center in Portland, OR. Following, he was the chief of the Psychology Department and then the co-director and program director at the Emanuel Pain Center, Emanuel Rehabilitation Center, Emanuel Hospital and Health Center in Portland.
Since 1987, Dr. Smith has been on the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) surveyor team surveying rehabilitation programs all over the country. He has had opportunities to share best practices with national and international programs, often bringing his learnings back to Progressive to continually improve programs. He has also invited other organizations in to learn from Progressive about how to create successful brain injury and pain programs. Countries where Dr. Smith exchanged learnings include England, Canada, Mexico, Argentina, among others. Dr. Smith has done numerous lectures and workshops for CARF, Pain Society of Oregon, Physical Therapists professional associations and organizations around the world. His teaching experience includes writing the majority of the material in a chapter on Pain in the text book for medical students called Behavioral Medicine: A Guide for clinical Practice, and he served on the faculty for the dental school at Pacific University in Portland. Currently, Dr. Smith is on staff at Southwest Medical Center in Vancouver, Washington, seeing psychiatric inpatients weekly.
“His hopeful, yet practical, ideas and suggestions challenge me to think and act beyond the constraining limits I set for myself so I can engage in activities that bring me joy.”
Dr. Smith received his Ph.D. with an emphasis in Clinical Psychology and his M.A. from the California School of Professional Psychology. After serving his internships in rehabilitation, behavior modification, biofeedback, individual and conjoint psycho-diagnostics, and alcoholism, he did his residency at St. Jude Hospital and Rehabilitation Center.
Dr. Smith’s clinical expertise and leadership have guided Progressive Rehabilitation Associates to become highly regarded by clients for making a huge impact on the quality of their lives. Dr. Smith believes that this success is due to the strong supportive interdisciplinary team at Progressive, stating:
“I can’t do anything by myself. The team is the strength of rehab. All play an important role. I
recognize the synergy of working together moves clients forward.”
Interested in learning more about Progressive's Brain Injury Rehabilitation and Chronic Pain Rehab programs? Check out Dr. Smith's video on PRA's programs, mission, and treatment values
"Dr. Greg Smith is approachable, compassionate, and wise in his understanding of chronic pain in all its complexities. His manner is relaxed and pleasant, and, no matter how stressed or physically uncomfortable I am upon arrival, I'm always calmer and more hopeful by the end of the hour. He listens extremely well. His hopeful, yet practical, ideas and suggestions challenge me to think and act beyond the constraining limits I set for myself so I can engage in activities that bring me joy."
- Miriam Rosser, Healthgrades
Are you a provider interested in learning from Greg Smith? Check out these publications and webinars
When it comes to environmental conservation and the Opal Creek Wilderness, George Atiyeh is a legendary environmentalist. Growing up near the Jawbone Flats, George fought back against the U.S. Forest Service’s plan to log the old growth forest of Opal Creek Wilderness. His efforts changed Oregon’s environmental movement resulting in the timber wars. In 1996, George’s efforts were observed when U.S. Senator Mark Hatfield passed legislation protecting Opal Creek Wilderness.
George Atiyeh attended Progressive Rehabilitation Associates’ Comprehensive Brain Injury Program (formerly the Brain Injury Rehabilitation Center). After going through the extensive program, George and his wife reflect on his recovery in a recent episode of OPB’s Think Out Loud.
“George didn’t start remembering things until about a year and a half after the accident when he was already in outpatient therapy”
- Hilary Atiyeh
At age 72, George’s life was taken in the Beachy Creek Fire. Remains were recovered at Atiyeh’s property and confirmed by family on Facebook. The fires devastated the land George fought to protect. George’s efforts led to protecting the 13,500-acre Opal Creek Scenic Recreation Area and 21,000-acre Opal Creek Wilderness Area. His daughter said in an interview with OregonLive, donations in his honor can be made to the Opal Creek Ancient Forest Center.
Learn more about the our brain injury rehab center and follow the Comprehensive Brain Injury Program. For the full Think Out Loud podcast and article, visit Rebroadcast: George and Hillary Atiyeh
Progressive Rehabilitation Associates: A founding member of the Foundation to Advance Brain Rehabilitation (FABR)
Progressive Rehabilitation Associates (Portland, OR Metro) partners with other National Brain Injury Providers to Establish a Data Consortium to Demonstrate the Value of Post-Acute Rehabilitation
.A select group of leading brain injury rehabilitation organizations from across the United States have announced a unique, one-of-a-kind alliance to improve outcomes in the rehabilitation field. Six organizations – Progressive Rehabilitation Associates, Learning Services, On With Life, Pate Rehabilitation, ReMed and Shepherd Center – have partnered to create the Foundation to Advance Brain Rehabilitation (FABR). The partnership allows the six organizations to aggregate outcome data to launch the only known national collaborative database in the United States that captures the impact of brain injury rehabilitation following the acute care setting.
The six FABR organizations represent 12 US states and comprehensively offer a continuum of post-acute neuro- rehabilitation and neuro-behavioral programs in various settings, including residential, inpatient, outpatient, day treatment, and home and community-based. FABR will utilize outcome data to research and demonstrate the value of post-acute brain injury rehabilitation within this continuum of services.
“Progressive Rehabilitation Associates is excited about participating in a large national initiative that can provide support to programs across the country. The sharing of outcome data will further enhance rehab clinicians’ knowledge base regarding what works for optimal success for clients,” comments Dr. Gregory Smith CEO of Progressive Rehabilitation Associates of the Portland Area.
“The potential impact of improving quality of life, return to work, and community participation of post-inpatient brain injury rehabilitation has increased dramatically in the last 20 years as inpatient rehabilitation stays following acquired brain injury (ABI) have decreased from months to weeks,” shares Dr. James Malec, chief scientific officer for FABR and senior research professor emeritus at the Indiana University School of Medicine. “The power of the FABR data and research is that it will help providers and the entire brain injury field understand best practices and demonstrate the effectiveness of post-acute rehabilitation.”
Beginning in June 2020, outcome data from each FABR organization was submitted to OutcomeInfo, a national web-based database system developed through the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The initial data set will include de-identified patient demographic information and Mayo-Portland Adaptability Inventory (MPAI-4) scores throughout the rehabilitation continuum.
In addition to identifying best practices in post-acute rehabilitation, a key goal in forming the FABR alliance is to justify care interventions and demonstrate a clear and measurable benefit for those interventions. This information can then be used by providers, patients and caregivers to advocate for appropriate access, benefit coverage, intensity and duration of rehabilitation services to achieve desired outcomes.
“Demonstrating the effectiveness and efficiency of specialized rehabilitation can be especially challenging for post-acute care providers,” shares Michael Choo, MD, chief medical officer for Paradigm and FABR’s medical consultative partner. “Rehabilitation benefits typically occur incrementally over the care continuum and the industry would benefit greatly by collaborating together to validate evidence-based minimum effective dose recommendations for many existing care interventions. The impact FABR can have in this area has life-changing potential for patients as well as providing guidance to both payers and policymakers.”
The six founding FABR organizations will remain as independent organizations but have formed a single non- profit entity to protect the confidentiality, aggregation and use of patient data. Founding members plan to add additional FABR organizations after the initial formative year.
Further information, including inquiries on how to become a part of the FABR work, contact Gregory Smith, PhD at Progressive Rehabilitation Associates at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Learn more about the brain injury rehab center and follow the Comprehensive Brain Injury Program at Progressive Rehabilitation Associates.