Susan Schneider Williams Speaks at #NOH19

Susan Schneider Williams, widow of famous actor Robin Williams, gave a keynote speech at the annual “Neurology On the Hill” 2019 on Capitol Hill. This event brings together neurologists from across the country to interface with lawmakers and advocate for neurological issues.

In Robin Williams’ final years, he suffered from Lewy body dementia (LBD). This has inspired Mrs. Schneider Williams to become a prominent advocate, fund raiser, and public speaker for brain disease research, in particular finding a cure for LBD. In 2016 she wrote a special editorial, “The Terrorist Inside My Husband’s Brain” that was printed in the Journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

Among the projects Mrs. Schneider Williams now has lined up, are gallery shows in the United States and Europe, with a significant percentage of the proceeds earmarked for the American Brain Foundation of which she is Vice Chair on the board of directors. “My goal is to turn Robin’s suffering into something meaningful,” said Schneider Williams. “Hopefully, from sharing his experience, our experience, I can help raise awareness and increase funding for brain disease research.”

Dr. Mark Mintz, MD, Chief Medical Officer and Founder of CNNH NeuroHealth, was at the event and had a chance to speak with Mrs. Schneider Williams following her well-received speech.

CNNH Goes to Washington #NOH19

For the fourth consecutive year, Dr. Mark Mintz, Chief Medical Officer and Founder of CNNH NeuroHealth, joined the New Jersey delegation for “Neurology On the Hill” #NOH19. This annual event organized by the American Academy of Neurology #AANadvocacy, brings together neurology delegations from across the country on Capitol Hill to advocate for important issues related to neurological care and to help educate senators and representatives on these matters.

Keynote speakers this year included Susan Schneider Williams, widow of Robin Williams. Because of Robin’s tragic story, she has become a prominent advocate for brain disease research, in particular Lewy body dementia (LBD) which had severely affected Robin in his final years. CLICK HERE for a separate CNNH blog post on Mrs Schneider Williams and her efforts…

Another keynote speaker was vice admiral Jerome Adams, MD, the current US Surgeon General.

Dr Mintz had a chance to chat with Mrs Schneider Williams as well as meet Congressmen Jeff Van Drew and John Joyce. We thank them for their support of neurological issues.

Check out these pictures Dr Mintz took from this year’s event, and then keep reading below to learn about the 2019 NOH Priority Issues…

 

Dr Mark Mintz, MD, talks with Susan Schneider Williams, widow of Robin Williams, following her keynote speech on brain research advocacy
US Surgeon General, Vice Admiral Jerome Adams, MD gives a speech at the conference
Meeting with Congressman Jeff Van Drew of NJ’s 1st district, we thank him for supporting NOH and the patients and families we serve.
Meeting with Congressman John Joyce of PA’s 13th district, we thank him for supporting NOH and the patients and families we serve.

2019 NOH PRIORITY ISSUES:

  1. Increasing funding for the NIH, including the BRAIN Initiative, and supporting the reauthorization of the Patient-centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI).
  2. Maintaining access to treatments by establishing an exception to step therapy protocols in specific circumstances.
  3. Preserving access to care for neurologic patients by opposing any payment policy that would further devalue complex E/M services.

 

CNNH Partners with Council Capital

 

A word from our founder:

“From humble beginnings in 2005, it has been our privilege to serve individuals and families nationally and internationally, providing answers and changing lives. Our vision of creating a unique, collaborative approach to evaluating, diagnosing and treating individuals with neurological, developmental, learning, cognitive and behavioral concerns has been transformative for so many patients and their families, as expressed in their success stories.

As our mission has developed, the needs of our patients and their families have driven our innovation and growth. To further our vision and mission, it is vital that we develop strategic partnerships for expanding our services and to meet the necessities and desires of a growing population with special needs.

That is why, with great enthusiasm, I am proud to announce that CNNH NeuroHealth has partnered with Council Capital, a healthcare-focused private equity firm based in Nashville. Council Capital recognizes the value CNNH’s model of care brings to a complex health care landscape that often neglects those with special needs. Thus, the goals and purposes of CNNH NeuroHealth and Council Capital are aligned to innovate, expand and enhance services to a wider array of patient populations and locations. This exciting partnership will provide much needed resources, expertise and relations needed to achieve our long-term goals and aspirations.

This is an exciting time and important historical milestone for CNNH NeuroHealth, as we will be able to better serve and assist our patients, their families, and the broader community. Stay tuned for updates on expanded programs, new services, and additional team members, and how CNNH NeuroHealth will continue to transform patient care.”

Best regards,

Mark Mintz, M.D.
Chief Medical Officer and Founder of CNNH NeuroHealth

 

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Community Day Recap 2018

On Saturday, January 23rd, 2018, CNNH hosted our second annual Community Day! This half-day event featured a mix of fun and informative workshops with community resources, children’s activities, therapy dog petting, coffee and lunch.

The six workshops that were presented by our expert physicians and therapists covered a variety of topics that informed adults and entertained kids. Scroll down to view pictures from each workshop…

This was our second successful year hosting this event, we hope to make this an annual event for years to come, so please show your support and come out next year, we’d love to meet you!

Workshop: “Benefits of Non-Pharmacological Treatment”
Balloon animals were a big hit!
Thank you to all the Community Resource exhibitors!
Workshop: “Mindfulness: Connecting to Ourselves and Others”
Workshop: “My Mind Boggling Brain! Neuroscience for Kids”
Lully the therapy dog was available for petting and meet’n’greets!
Workshop: “Growing Up: Challenges of Transition Care”
Interesting balloon shape!
Workshop: “The Value of a Neuropsychological Evaluation to the IEP Process”
Eat’n’Greet Lunch Session!
Glitter Paint Tattoos!
The unofficial Community Day mascot : ) After all, he has our t-shirt and a cool hat!

CNNH Goes to Washington 2018 Edition

Pictured Above (from left to right): Joshua Mendelson, MD, Machteld Hillen, MD, and Mark Mintz, MD

Mark Mintz, MD, recently joined the NJ delegation of neurologists at the annual “Neurology on the Hill” 2018.  #NOH2018  This event has neurologists from all over the country gather at the Capitol in Washington D.C. to meet with lawmakers and discuss healthcare reform from a neurologist’s perspective. Dr. Mintz visited the offices of NJ lawmakers including Corey Booker, Robert Menendez, and Donald Norcross.

The AAN’s 16th annual Neurology on the Hill (NOH) concluded last week with some amazing success.
211 member advocates, 90 first-time member advocates, 49 states and DC represented, 298 US congressional offices visited, 200 House offices, 98 Senate offices, 3 million impressions on Twitter with the hashtag #NOH18

This year’s main topics of discussion included:

1. Increasing funding for the NIH, including research on non-opioid treatments for pain (S. 2260/H.R. 4733) and the BRAIN Initiative

2. Reforming drug pricing to promote price transparency and patient access to needed treatments (S. 1131/H.R. 2439)

3. Reducing regulatory hassles, including encouraging the use of electronic prior authorization in Medicare (H.R. 4841)

Team CNNH Goes International!

 

It is not too late to show your support! We are still accepting donations through December 31st, 2017…


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Drs. Mark & Pnina Mintz, on behalf of Team CNNH, recently completed an arduous five day journey on their trusty bicycles across the landscapes of Israel (400+ miles combined) to raise funds for NeurAbilities and Arava Institute. Scroll down to view pictures from the trip and to learn about the event and these two worthy organizations.

Learn more about Team CNNH past activities HERE… and consider joining the team! We’re always doing fun rides, runs and walks throughout the year! Team CNNH members get a cool CNNH hat and/or CNNH bike jersey.


Celebrating the end of the ride at the Red Sea!
Dr. Pnina Mintz surveys the Negev desert as she prepares her mind and body for the trip.
Dr. Mark Mintz early in the trip. Heading south, greens gave way to rolling desert hills.

Ein Avdat canyon was one of many exciting sights to be seen along the way.

 

Over the years, Team CNNH has raised tens of thousands of dollars for various worthy charities. Our goal for the ride is to raise $10,000 with half (50%) going to the Arava Institute of Environmental Studies and the other half locally to NeurAbilities programs. The primary beneficiaries of our fundraising will be the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies (arava.org) and NeurAbilities (neurabilities.org).

The Arava Institute for Environmental Studies is one of the leading environmental academic and research institutions in the Middle East. Its mission is to use the world’s environmental resource challenges to build dialogue, cooperation, and trust among Israelis, Palestinians and Jordanians and, in doing so, create a catalyst for peace.

NeurAbilities, based locally in Voorhees, New Jersey helps empower special needs communities by increasing their community inclusion, knowledge and supports, and foster independence, self-esteem and artistic expression through creative arts, education and research.


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If Palestinians And Israelis Can Cooperate On The Environment…

Huffington Post 06/16/2017 05:26 pm ET

Investing in peace and the environment makes sense. Palestine and Israel are on the same side of the Paris Accord. In a world of scarce resources that is hotter and dryer than ever before the lack of water for people and nations will be a constant cause for further conflict. The Middle East, especially the land lived in by the peoples of Jordan, Israel and Palestine – and now more than 1.3 million Syrian refugees – is smaller than the state of New York. If one nation pollutes, they all experience repercussions if wastewater is dumped in the Mediterranean it washes up on the others’ beaches; if water is not available for domestic and agricultural use it will disrupt the lives of their peoples. Much of the land is already a desert, some even hyper-arid receiving less than 1 inch of rain a year. Little grows and what does requires intelligent conservation and sophisticated reuse of water. Sunlight and thus solar power is plentiful for those with the land and know-how to capture it. Rivers and aquifers are shared. There is no escaping the fact that nature knows no borders. Palestinians, Jordanians and Israelis are working together on cross-boundary solutions to environmental problems. Surprised? Well, you might be. The Arava Institute for Environmental Studies located in the south of Israel, largely housed on one of the few remaining traditional kibbutz communities, has been working to educate young leaders from all three of these societies and build trust for twenty years. This has led to cooperative research and development in renewable energy, water conservation, as well as wastewater treatment and reuse and sustainable agricultural innovation. How can a small Institute in the middle of nowhere accomplish this? As Margaret Mead famously said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” In fact, the Arava Institute, from its inception was committed to educating and working beyond borders. At the Arava Institute students Jordanians, Palestinians, Israelis and citizens of the world, largely North Americans are actively trained to respect each other by learning about environmental challenges together and by intensive peace-building leadership seminars. These students are increasingly in positions to make a cooperative future possible. Bottom of Form The Arava Institute is now moving forward to build political solutions to the region’s environmental problems. Last fall representatives from Jordan, Israel and Palestinian entities (some the Institute’s own alumni) came together to look at the issues. Today those partners are in working-groups, focusing on viable cross-border solutions. The environment cannot wait for a peace-accord that seems intractable or for environmental accords that all three of these parties are signers of the Paris Accord, even if the United States has now withdrawn its support. Why should we care about the resources of Israel’s neighbors? Beyond Israel’s self-interest in clean beaches and aquifers, Israel is a leader in water reuse and conservation, as well as desalinization, and knows that stable neighbors are an essential element in securing peace; and water and accessible energy are essential for economic, social and political stability. Climate change will have a major impact on an already water-scarce region. Only through cross-border cooperation will the region be able to adapt peacefully to higher temperatures, less rainfall, biodiversity loss and the shift in climate zones. Looking for solutions, as partners on environmental issues, is part of the way forward. If the Arava Institute can make progress then hopefully so can our governments and leaders. We must look forward to building a more peaceful, sustainable and healthy future that will allow for the region to teach about the possibilities of peace and the importance of environmental cooperation today and for our future.

Neurology on the Hill 2017 #NOH2017

Mark Mintz, MD had an interesting couple of days in Washington D.C. at “Neurology On the Hill 2017” #NOH2017 organized by the American Academy of Neurology!

This annual event brings neurologists from all over the country to “the Hill” in D.C. to meet with top lawmakers and educate them and advocate for important healthcare issues related to neurology.

Mark Mintz, MD meeting with lawmakers at Capitol Hill, including the offices of NJ Senator Cory Booker among others

The AAN 2017 Priority Issues included:
 Access to high quality health care and preventative care through insurance coverage for all, including
those most vulnerable to health care disparities, regardless of pre-existing conditions
 Appropriately value cognitive care services
 Limit administrative requirements and advocate for EHR functionality to ensure that physicians spend as
little time as possible on low-value clerical work, and as much time as possible engaged in direct patient
care
 Continue efforts to streamline EHR interoperability and reduce data blocking to allow any willing
provider to participate in a qualified clinical data registry
 Improved valuation of patient-centered care setting alternatives including telemedicine and other
innovative care models
 Improve efforts to reduce spending on pharmaceuticals and other key drivers of health care expense
through cost transparency and permit the negotiation of drug costs by Medicare
 Medical liability reforms to reduce the cost of premiums and defensive medicine
 Preservation of the physician-patient relationship including independent medical decision-making and
patient access to needed treatments and education
 Protect access to neurology care in all settings, including small and solo practices

 Support price negotiation for covered Medicare Part D drugs. Price negotiation would allow the government to leverage its purchasing power in an effort to obtain drugs at a lower price, bringing savings to the health care system and consumers.
 Promote transparency in prescription drug pricing. Disclosure of pricing information, including how drugs are priced, the prices paid by insurers, and the prices paid by consumers, would provide important information that could lower costs for patients and the entire health care system.
 Limit direct-to-consumer advertising. Advertisements create demand for unnecessary or inappropriate
medications and marketing costs play a role in escalating drug prices.
 Support drug reimportation for medications of the same high quality. Many specialty drugs are priced
significantly higher in the United States than in other countries. For example, the average monthly price of multiple sclerosis drug Copaxone is 287 percent greater in the United States than Switzerland. Reimportation offers an opportunity to offer lower cost medications.

 Support Senate Appropriations Committee-approved $34.1 billion in NIH funding for FY2017 and the continued annual appropriations to fully fund the NIH Innovation Account, as authorized by the 21st Century Cures Act.

 Improving access to Stroke Telemedicine Care

Wall Township – NEW LOCATION!!!

CNNH – Wall Township has a new home! We are proud to announce that our Wall Township office has moved to a more spacious, modern facility. We are excited that this improved facility will contribute to a better office experience for our patients. Go to our LOCATIONS page for the address and directions to this new location.

Here are some quick snapshots of the new facility below. Pardon the bare walls as we continue to decorate!

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CRCNJ Takes Part in New Enzyme Treatment for Autism

Courtesy of NJ.COM…
njarticleauthor

Could a dose of an enzyme, administered through food by the use of “sprinkles,” help reduce the symptoms of autism?

That possibility is being investigated in a clinical trial at two New Jersey locations. Both are looking for children ages 3 to 8 to be study participants.

The drug, called blüm, is based on research that showed children with autism often have a shortage of certain enzymes that result in the inability to digest protein.

That in turn affects the availability of amino acids, which are essential for brain function.

“There’s a growing body of research on the links between the gut and the brain, so there seems to be some connections there,” said Mark Mintz, the pediatrician running the study site at the Clinical Research Center of New Jersey, in Voorhees.

A second study site is in Toms River, at Children’s Specialized Hospital research center.

The goal of the treatment is to reduce irritability, agitation, and hyperactivity among the children who participate. A secondary effect might be to produce some improvement in social interaction, Mintz said.

The substance under study is a biologic, an enzyme instead of a drug. That means it’s comparable to Lactaid, the commercial product containing the lactase enzyme that people with lactose intolerance are lacking.

The study is a Phase III Food and Drug Administration clinical trial, which means the medicine has already proved to be safe.

This newest round of research is one in which some of the children will receive the medicine, while others will receive a placebo, or inert substance. Neither the researchers nor the parents will know which children got the drug until the study is concluded.

The biologic will be administered in the form of “sprinkles” that are put atop food. Parents will have to keep logs of a child’s behavior, and bring in a stool sample once a month.

The study lasts for 14 weeks and participation is free. Participants can also get reimbursed for travel costs as well.

Children will have an initial behavioral assessment to determine if they qualify. Mintz said in general the study is looking for children who have moderate-to-severe autism who are either non-verbal or minimally verbal, or who are already receiving services for their diagnosis.

The study, now beginning at 25 sites nationally, is being run by the biologic’s developer, Curemark, a drug research and development company.

At this time, it is limited to children ages 3 through 8.

“If you’re going to make a change in autism, it’s better to start earlier,” Mintz said.

Kathleen O’Brien may be reached at kobrien@njadvancemedia.com. Follow her on Twitter @OBrienLedger. Find NJ.com on Facebook.

CNNH Presents at ASET Neurotech Conference

Laura Szklarski, BS, R-EEG.T and Kimberly Catterall, R-EEG.T, Neurotechnologists at CNNH, presented a poster entitled “High Density Electroencephalography (HD-EEG) and Desensitization Techniques Improve Compliance Without Sedation or Restraint For Children and Adults with Behavioral Challenges,” at the American Society of Electroneurodiagnostic Technologists (ASET) 2016 Conference in Pittsburgh, PA last Thursday.

The poster educated the technologist community on High Density EEG and strategies to improve compliance for EEG with behaviorally challenged individuals without the need for sedation or restraint. The poster was extremely well-received and commended by the community, and it was evident that technologists are eager for strategies and assistance in avoiding the use of sedation and restraint for their patients. CNNH is a leader in providing quality neurodiagnostic testing for individuals who would otherwise be challenging and non-compliant in a typical hospital setting.

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