Gillian A. Hotz, Ph.D.
Research Professor, Department of Neurological Surgery
Director, KiDZ Neuroscience Center
Director, Concussion WalkSafe®, BikeSafe®, and SkateSafe® Programs
The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis
1095 NW 14th Terrace (R-48)
Miami, FL 33136
Areas Of Research
Injury Prevention and Concussion Management
As a behavioral neuroscientist my clinical interests have always been investigating neurocognitive disorders of those individuals that have sustained a traumatic and acquired brain injury. I am the Principal Investigator on many funded national, state and local grants for injury prevention research projects and clinical trials for children and adolescents with traumatic brain injury. Over the five few years I have focused my attention on concussion related research. As the UM site PI I we have been involved with a number of clinical trials; the GE & NFL study: Advanced MRI Applications for Mild TBI-Phase 2 and 3, BrainScope, an EEG MTBI study, with the EEG now FDA approved; analyzing 10 years of data from a Countywide Concussion Injury Surveillance System, and was funded by Scythian Biosciences to investigate Mild TBI and CBD, The Effects of Cannabinoids on TBI. On the injury prevention side, our team has developed, implemented, disseminated and evaluated WalkSafe®, a best practice pediatric pedestrian program recognized by the National Safe Routes to School Program funded by the Florida Department of Transportation. WalkSafe® the program is an evidence based elementary school pedestrian injury prevention program that has been shown to be effective in decreasing the number of children that are hit by cars in Miami-Dade County. The WalkSafe® program developed in 2003 receives funding from a number of sources and pioneered the 5E model of education, engineering, enforcement, evaluation and encouragement.
The BikeSafe® program developed in 2009 continues to be implemented yearly in middle schools, bike clubs after school and parks in Miami-Dade County(MDC). We are now developing an elementary school bike program to teach safety skills to younger children. As the Director of the UConcussion Program we have developed a comprehensive concussion in sports program for all of MDC public high schools and most private schools and implement a 6 step to play it safe countywide high school concussion program which includes, baseline testing (ImPACT), sideline screening SCAT 5, concussion clinic follow up with gradual return to play and learn and a concussion injury surveillance system. We continue to annually train high school and college athletic trainers and coaches on a yearly basis. We also implement a countywide program for Palm Beach County Public High Schools.
Over the years, I have had the opportunity to present at many conferences on the local, national and international levels as well as have published in multiple journals and books. I am the co-author on the Brief Test of Head Injury (1992) and the lead author on the Pediatric Test of Brain Injury (2009) both neurocognitive tests. I enjoy teaching colleagues, residents, and students and I am a board member on a number of Advisory Groups and National Associations. My goal is to make this world a safer place for children to play, learn and grow.
Could a Pill Treat Concussion? (November 2016)
KiDZ Neuroscience Center
American Association of Multi-Sensory Environments