(Delray Beach, FL –May 11, 2022)
The HOW (Help Our Wounded) Foundation of South Florida is excited to announce the receipt of a grant from the B.J. & Paula Harris Fund at Palm Health Foundation to provide a dozen concussed student athletes access to free medical-grade hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT). Palm Health Foundation’s funding for HBOT comes at a time when studies show a continued increase in concussions among high school athletes, a traumatic brain injury that can result in temporary or permanent impairment of cognitive, emotional, and/or physical function. The grant is aligned with Palm Health Foundation’s efforts to advance brain health in Palm Beach County.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy promotes healing by using pure oxygen as a therapeutic drug and introducing it in a pressurized environment, which increases the body’s concentration of oxygen. This mechanism allows the brain and body a better way of utilizing its natural ability to repair itself by reintroducing blood flow into areas where oxygen levels have been previously damaged, compromised, or rendered inactive.
Athletes can recover their brain health within a week of their concussion with medical-grade HBOT in an average of only 3 sessions according to physicians who are currently utilizing the therapy for their patients. For athletes beyond a week since their concussion, more sessions are needed for their brain to recover.
“It is a privilege to partner with the B.J. & Paula Harris Fund at Palm Health Foundation to help hard-working student athletes suffering with debilitating concussion symptoms to recover their brain health,” said Hilary Loftus, healthcare education director, HOW Foundation South Florida. “Their relief and that of their families as these formerly impaired young people return to their normal academics, sports, and life with family and friends is truly a joy to witness.”
The B.J. & Paula Harris Fund honors the memory of B.J. Harris who whole-heartedly believed in giving back to the community where he lived. His deep commitment to community coupled with a keen interest in health improvement compelled him to establish a donor advised fund at Palm Health Foundation.
“Enabling student athletes to restore their brain health is a cause B.J. Harris would have been proud to support,” said Patrick McNamara, president and CEO of Palm Health Foundation. “He would be pleased to see how we are caring for these young role models in our community so that they can continue to live healthy, fulfilling lives.”
About Palm Health Foundation:
Palm Health Foundation is Palm Beach County’s community foundation for health. With the support of donors and a focus on results, the foundation builds strong community partnerships, respects diverse opinions, advocates for its most vulnerable neighbors and inspires innovative solutions to lead change for better health now and for generations to come. The foundation supports health equity for Palm Beach County residents of all backgrounds, heritage, education, incomes and states of well-being. Palm Health Foundation has invested more than $89 million in Palm Beach County health since 2001. For more information about Palm Health Foundation, visit palmhealthfoundation.org or call (561) 833-6333.
About HOW Foundation of South Florida:
The HOW Foundation of South Florida is a 501c3 nonprofit organization that pledges to improve the quality of life for individuals, families, and communities by advocating for and providing access to hyperbaric oxygen therapy for those suffering with traumatic brain injuries and post-traumatic stress. Clients include both military veterans and concussed student athletes. We help these people by reducing the barriers to hyperbaric oxygen therapy treatment. Most often, this barrier is financial access. Please visit our YouTube Channel (HOW Foundation of South Florida) to see testimonies of the concussed student-athletes and veterans HOW has helped to recover their brain health. For more information, call 561-450-6213 or visit howfoundationsf.org.
Photos Attached of Concussed Student Athletes that have gone through HBOT Treatment through the HOW Foundation of South Florida.
- Caroline Pagacs, UF Diver from Wellington, FL
- Asher Bennett, Age 11 Lacrosse Player
- Joseph Anderson, Track, Lynn University Graduate
Available for Interview:
Healthcare Education Director
HOW Foundation South Florida