August 27, 2008
Wilson Research Foundation donates $461,000 to advance neuroscience research
JACKSON, Miss.—The Wilson Research Foundation recently donated $461,000 to fund patient-focused research at Methodist Rehabilitation Center in Jackson.
Judge Ginny Wilson Mounger, chairman of the foundation board, said the grant supports studies to benefit persons who experience a disabling illness or injury, a mission that is especially important in Mississippi. “Our incidence of stroke, for instance, is unparalleled,” she said. “We’re the first in something that we wish we were not.”
Mounger’s leadership role at the foundation continues the legacy of her father, the late Earl R. Wilson, who was founding chairman of the hospital’s board of trustees. Wilson and his wife, Martha Lyles Wilson, devoted decades of service to Mississippians with disabilities, and the 501(c)(3) nonprofit foundation is named in their honor.
Since its formation in 1989, the foundation has funded more than $2.1 million in research grants to Methodist Rehab through its Center for Neuroscience and Neurological Recovery.
“We couldn’t have such a renowned research program without the support of the Wilson Foundation,” said Methodist Rehab CEO Mark Adams.
Dr. Dobrivoje Stokic, Methodist Rehab’s administrative director of research, said the support of the foundation allows the team of researchers to quickly bring emerging discoveries to the bedsides of patients with a variety of disabling conditions. “The unique
thing about our research is it is integrated into clinical practice,” he said.
Among the patients benefiting from this approach is Karen Skeen of Madison, who was the first spinal cord injury patient to sign up for the center’s eTHANKS project. The Web-based program serves as a ‘round-the-clock resource for patients seeking critical self-care strategies.
Data will be collected to determine the effectiveness of the online educational program for the prevention of secondary complications such as pressure sores.
Other ongoing research at Methodist Rehab ranges from ways to improve control of arm and leg movement following a brain or spinal injury to a variety of concerns related to confusion and consciousness in brain injury victims.
“It was Earl Wilson’s dream that research drive excellence here at Methodist Rehab, and that dream is being realized,” said Chris Blount, executive director of the Wilson Foundation. “This is a key reason why Methodist is the premiere neurological rehab center in the region and truly one of the best in the nation. It keeps Methodist at the forefront of best practices in rehabilitation medicine, which immediately benefits our patients.
“What’s more—from right here in Jackson, Mississippi—Methodist has gained national and international recognition due to our discoveries and contributions relating to more accurate diagnosis, assessment and treatment of disabling injuries and diseases.”
From left, Rick Fountain, Dr. Robert Smith, Sally Carmichael, Dr. Dobrivoje Stokic, Ginny Wilson Mounger, Martha Wilson, Mark Adams and Chris Blount