World Coma Day Featured Speakers

Speakers Photo About
Claude Hemphill (USA)

Dr. Claude Hemphill is Professor of Neurology and Neurological Surgery at the University of California, San Francisco and Chief of Neurology and Director of Neurocritical Care at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital. His research focuses on advanced neuromonitoring, outcome prognostication, and management of intracerebral hemorrhage. He is a founding director and Past-President of the Neurocritical Care Society. He is co-chair of the Curing Coma Campaign and World Coma Day is his favorite new holiday.

DaiWai Olson (USA)

Dr. Olson began his nursing career at in Iowa and obtained his PhD at the University of North Carolina. He worked as a staff nurse from 1986 to 2018. He was an assistant professor at Duke University until 2012 when he relocated to work at the University of Texas Southwestern where he now the first nurse to be promoted to full Professor.

Dr. Olson’s work is focused on developing a more comprehensive understanding of how nursing care contributes to patient outcomes following acquired brain injury. In this endeavor, he has published over 300 manuscripts, 16 book chapters, and 200 scientific abstracts. He is the Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of Neuroscience Nursing and the co-chair of the international Neurocritical Care Research Network. As an invited lecturer or visiting professor, he has had the pleasure to present his work in 39 US states, 10 countries and 5 continents.

Eelco Wijdicks (USA)

Eelco F.M. Wijdicks MD, PhD is Professor of Neurology, College of Medicine, Mayo Clinic. In 1991 he established the Mayo Neurocritical Care Specialty. He is an attending neurointensivist in the Neurosciences Intensive Care Unit at Saint Marys Hospital in Rochester. He was the founding editor of the journal Neurocritical Care, the official journal of the Neurocritical Care Society. He has been named Honorary Member of the Neurocritical Care Society. He is also a Professor of the History of Medicine and former president of the International Society of the History of Neurosciences. He has over 1000 research papers, practice guidelines, topic reviews, book chapters and editorials to his credit. He originated the FOUR Score coma scale. He has single-authored and co-authored over 25 books on Neurocritical Care with multiple later editions and edited several books on Emergency Neurology. He additionally authored 3 books on the portrayal of medicine, neurology and psychiatry in cinema. He lives with his wife Barbara-Jane in Rochester (MN) and Bonita Springs (FL).

Joe Giacino (USA)

Dr. Joseph T. Giacino is a Neuropsychologist at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital, and Professor of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Harvard Medical School in Boston Massachusetts. At Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, he directs the Rehabilitation Neuropsychology Service, Disorders of Consciousness Program and Neurorehabilitation Laboratory. At Harvard Medical School, he teaches neuroethics and serves as a Capstone mentor at the Center for Bioethics. He is also Adjunct Professor in the Rehabilitation Sciences Doctoral Program at the MGH Institute of Health Professions. His work centers on the development of high-precision assessment methods, practical approaches to longitudinal outcome monitoring and discovery of effective treatment interventions for individuals with severe brain injury. His research is funded by the National Institute on Neurological Disorders and Stroke, Department of Defense, National Institute on Disability, Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research and the Epstein Foundation. He has authored over 170 publications and is the recipient of the William Fields Caveness Award, Robert L. Moody Prize and ACRM Brain Injury Special Interest Group Lifetime Achievement Award.

Nicholas Schiff (USA)

Dr. Nicholas Schiff is a physician-scientist with an internationally recognized expertise in the study of recovery of consciousness. He is The Jerold B. Katz Professor of Neurology and Professor of Neuroscience in the Feil Family Brain and Mind Research Institute at Weill Cornell Medicine. Dr. Schiff’s translational research efforts bridge basic neuroscience and clinical investigative studies of impaired consciousness employing state-of-the art neuroimaging and neurophysiological measurements to focus on novel therapeutic strategies. Dr. Schiff and colleagues have taken core insights into the neurophysiological mechanisms of arousal regulation and of deep brain electrical stimulation techniques to demonstrate evidence that long-lasting, severe cognitive disability may be influenced by electrical stimulation of the central thalamus in both patients with disorders of consciousness and those recovering to higher levels of function but remaining cognitively impaired.