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CCLC Honors IMNF Executive Director Dr. Connie Tomaino with First Ever Burton Grebin Award

Citing her pioneering role in advancing the scope of long-term care through music therapy, the Continuing Care Leadership Coalition (CCLC) presented Dr. Concetta M. Tomaino with its first annual Burton Grebin, MD Award for Innovation. As Executive Director and co-founder of the Institute for Music and Neurologic Function (IMNF), Dr. Tomaino has been instrumental in advancing music therapy from its recreational roots to a clinically recognized therapeutic program for the treatment of people with neurological diseases and traumatic brain injuries.


“Connie Tomaino has inspired so many people, from nursing home residents and colleagues to therapists in training and musicians,” stated CLCC Executive Vice President Roxanne Tena-Nelson. “This inaugural Burton Grebin, MD award honors Connie for her innovation in the field of long-term care and for embodying the dedication that Burt Grebin brought to our field.”

Adding to the tribute, Roxanne Tena-Nelson read a letter from the renowned author and neurologist Dr. Oliver Sacks, who has worked with Dr. Tomaino for more than 30 years and co-founded the IMNF with her in the mid 1990s.

“Connie Tomaino has long been dedicated to improving the lives of patients with all sorts of conditions, and bringing to them both the joys and the therapeutic powers of music,” wrote Dr. Sacks.

“She has mentored and inspired countless music therapists around the world, and her experience and advice have influenced much of the research on music therapy…She has been my close colleague and friend for many decades and I greatly value her insights and advice.”

The Burton Grebin, MD Award for Innovation

Named for the late President and CEO of St. Mary’s Healthcare System for Children, Dr. Burton Grebin, MD transformed St. Mary’s from a 40-bed children's hospital in Queens, N.Y. into the region's largest provider of post-acute care for children, serving more than 4,000 children in the hospital or in their homes every day. As a result of Dr. Grebin’s innovative leadership and guidance, St. Mary's Healthcare System is now one the few organizations in the United States dedicated to providing intensive rehabilitation, specialized care, and education to children with special needs and life-limiting conditions.

About the Institute for Music and Neurologic Function

The IMNF is a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) organization and a member of Beth Abraham Family of Health Services, a regional leader in providing residential, home and community-based long term care for chronically ill and disabled adults throughout the New York metropolitan area. Founded in 1995, the IMNF is driven by 35 years of clinical observations on the actual effects of music on different types of physical and neurological trauma. Directed by renowned music therapist Dr. Concetta M. Tomaino, with medical guidance from distinguished neurologist Dr. Oliver Sacks, its distinctive setting allows researchers to apply new therapeutic theories and then, to follow patients’ long-term rehabilitation.

The Institute actively collaborates with researchers and practitioners at other leading organizations to advance world progress in understanding and applying the power of music to promote healing and wellness. Some of the Institute’s most promising research and groundbreaking discoveries are in the areas of music and language, memory, and recovery from nerve injury.

About Beth Abraham Family of Health Services

The Beth Abraham Family of Health Services is a not-for-profit regional leader in providing and coordinating home and community-based long term care for chronically ill and disabled adults throughout the New York metropolitan area. Our continuing care services include residential health care, subacute medical care, rehabilitation, home care, HIV/AIDS home care, comprehensive care management, adult day health care and independent housing facilities for the elderly and disabled. For more information about the Beth Abraham Family of Health Services, visit us at www.bethabe.org.

About the CLCC

The Continuing Care Leadership Coalition is a membership and advocacy organization comprising more than 100 of the nation’s most innovative and comprehensive not-for-profit and public long term care organizations, located in the New York metropolitan area and beyond.

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