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Hospital teams up with nonprofit to support the paralyzed

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Antelope Valley Medical Center (AVMC) and the Triumph Foundation, a nonprofit organization that helps individuals with spinal cord injuries, have formed a partnership to help patients get the support they need.

Paralysis or loss of mobility can be caused by various illnesses or injuries, but often occurs after a spinal cord injury. Through this agreement, AV Hospital case managers will notify the Triumph Foundation when a hospitalized patient is diagnosed with a paralyzing injury. A Triumph Foundation ambassador will come to the hospital with a care basket filled with information and encouraging gifts. The ambassador meets with the patient and their family to assist them in understanding the diagnosis and identifying resources to help them transition to a safe home environment.

"The cornerstone of what we do is provide support to those who are newly paralyzed," said Triumph Foundation Founder Andrew Skinner. "This new partnership not only allows our ambassadors to help people immediately after their injury, but also gets them connected with all of Triumph Foundation’s many programs, support groups and fellow members who understand what they’re experiencing."

AVMC cares for more than 1,200 trauma patients each year. The most common traumatic injuries include blunt trauma, motor vehicle collisions and falls, any of which can result in a spinal cord injury and loss of mobility. As a Level II trauma center, the hospital has a specialized team of specialists, surgeons and other professionals available 24/7 to provide immediate care to trauma patients.

"Connecting our patients with the Triumph Foundation is an important step toward physical and emotional healing," said Michelle Schaefer, AV Hospital’s trauma program manager. "We are fortunate to have a resource like this right here in the Antelope Valley."

About the Triumph Foundation

Triumph Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to help children, adults and veterans with spinal cord injury/disorders to triumph over their disability and to inspire them to keep moving forward with their lives by pushing themselves to get better every day. Services include providing grants to help obtain necessary equipment, supplies and services; assisting with home modifications for wheelchair accessibility; leading support groups; and holding adaptive recreational programs to support disabled athletes. Outreach and peer support is provided throughout Los Angeles, Orange, Ventura, Santa Barbara, San Bernardino, Riverside, Kern and San Diego counties.

The organization has provided support for more than 5,000 individuals with disabilities; given $500,000 in assistance to people with inadequate medical insurance and financial hardship; performed ten accessible home remodels; provided wheelchair accessible vehicles to eight individuals who did not have the means to purchase one on their own; delivered over 1,500 Care Baskets full of resources to those newly injured; and regularly visits many hospitals and rehabilitation centers throughout Southern California.