The Misericordia University Interprofessional Education Connection (MIPEC) is offering the special presentation about turning tragedy into triumph by Kiel Eigen of Quantum Rehab on Wednesday, Feb. 22 at 6:30 p.m. in Lemmond Theater in Walsh Hall. The inspirational presentation is free, and open to the public.
Eigen is a spokesperson for Quantum Rehab, a power chair solutions division of Pride Mobility Products with corporate headquarters in Exeter. As a high school freshman football player in 2006, he suffered a neck injury in a game that left him paralyzed from the waist down.
A native and resident of Old Forge, Eigen suffered an injury to the C5/C6 vertebrae injury in his neck. Air lifted to Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, doctors fused his C4, C5 and C6 vertebrae together. He spent 13 days in the Intensive Care Unit before transferring to Allied Service inpatient facility in Scranton. Hospitalized for 47 days, Eigen continued with his physical therapy, five days a week for two more years.
A gifted athlete, his life and dreams changed forever on that fall afternoon. Despite his circumstances, he graduated with honors from high school on time with his classmates. His hard work and determination also enabled him to walk – with the support of leg braces and a walker – on his senior night and during commencement to receive his diploma.
Eigen has not stopped working, as he is an advocate for people with spinal cord injuries. He graduated with his Bachelor of Arts degree in 2015 from King's College, was awarded the Patricia Foy Memorial Award for Courage, hosted the hour-long webinar, "Living with Spinal Cord Injury,'' and has been an active member of the disability committee for Lackawanna County.
Today, he utilizes his position with Pride Mobility to travel the country, making appearances at consumer expos and events to meet with people and deliver his message of hope and determination. Eigen encourages others to live their life to the fullest regardless of circumstance, as he believes the only disability in life is a bad attitude.
MIPEC in the College of Health Science and Education works to engage students and faculty in interprofessional education and experiences to support the collaborative team approach to patient/client-centered care. Its mission is to prepare students and faculty to function as members of an effective collaborative health team. Participants learn to understand the unique roles and responsibilities that support value for patients in an evolving health care system, while creating a culture of using proven best practices supported by evidence, and promoting coordinated, timely, efficient, and effective approaches to interprofessional education and practice. MIPEC also promotes and advances research and scholarly activity related to interprofessional education and practice within the health care profession.