Pilot Funding

Pilot Awards Announced: Addressing Health Disparities in Adults or Children with Disabilities

The Center for Engagement in Disability Health and Rehabilitation Sciences (CEDHARS) is pleased to announce the recipients of its fall 2021 pilot grant funding opportunity, “Addressing Health Disparities in Adults or Children with Disabilities.” CEDHARS’ overarching mission is to advance scientific discovery, translational research, education, and engagement in the fields of disability health and rehabilitation sciences, and this pilot program aims to support the advancement of disability health research. Applications were highly competitive and were peer reviewed using the NIH scoring framework. The quality of proposals was so high that CEDHARS was obliged to fund five projects at $35,0000 each instead of the previously announced three!

Five proposals were chosen for funding:

“Improving Social Isolation and Loneliness Among Children with Physical Disabilities Through Group-Based Online Virtual Reality Gaming,” by Dr. Byron Lai, Assistant Professor in the Heersink School of Medicine Department of Pediatrics Rehabilitation Medicine Division;

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“Low-Carbohydrate Diet to Reduce Pain and Increase Quality of Life in Amputees,” by Dr. Robert Sorge, Associate Professor in the College of Arts and Sciences Department of Psychology, and Dr. Conley Carr, Assistant Professor in the Heersink School of Medicine Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation;

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“Two Birds with One Stone: Impact of A Low Glycemic Index Diet on Postprandial Hypotension and Glucose Metabolism in Individuals with Spinal Cord Injury,” by Dr. Jia Li, Postdoctoral Fellow in the Heersink School of Medicine Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, and Dr. Amy Goss, Assistant Professor in the School of Health Professions Department of Nutrition Sciences;

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“Application of a Reimbursable Form of Constraint-Induced Movement Therapy for Upper Extremity Recovery Following Stroke: a Pilot Study,” by Dr. Sarah dos Anjos, Assistant Professor in the School of Health Professions Department of Occupational Therapy, and Dr. David Morris, Professor and Chair of the School of Health Professions Department of Physical Therapy;

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“Controlling Videogames with an Adapted Touchpad System to Increase Physical Activity Among Adults with Mobility Limitations,” by Dr. Christen Mendonca, Postdoctoral Scholar in the School of Health Professions UAB/Lakeshore Foundation Research Collaborative.

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Congratulations to Drs. Lai, Sorge, Carr, Li, Goss, dos Anjos, Morris, and Mendonca!

View Original RFA (PDF)


Please direct any questions or requests for additional information to Jamie Black at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..