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James C. Jackson, PsyD

Medical & Healthcare, Mind, Body, & Wellness, Colleges & Universities, Self Help, Current Affairs & Events

Speaker Bio

Dr. James Jackson is a Professor of Medicine and Psychiatry at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, a neuropsychologist, and an influential expert on the effects of Long Covid on cognition functioning and mental health. He is the Director of Long-Term Outcomes at the Critical Illness, Brain Dysfunction, and Survivorship (CIBS) Center, one of the world’s leading research and clinical centers dedicated to understanding the interface between the body and the brain, and the founder of a Covid “Long Haulers” support group program for individuals and their families. As Director of Behavioral Health at one of the nation’s first clinics dedicated to caring for survivors of critical illness, Jackson is a pioneering expert on cognitive impairment, depression, and PTSD, authoring over 150 scientific publications in leading academic journals. He is currently the Principal Investigator in a trial study of the impact of neuroplasticity-based cognitive training on Covid survivors experiencing “brain fog.” His work has been funded by the National Institute of Health, Department of Defense, and the Department of Veterans Affairs and his research has been featured in mainstream media outlets including The New York Times, The Atlantic, National Geographic, CNN, and PBS. A go-to expert on the cutting edge of research into the medical mystery of Long Covid, Dr. Jackson speaks at academic conferences, medical centers, colleges and universities, and healthcare forums worldwide. His first book, Clearing the Fog : From Surviving to Thriving with Long Covid — A Practical Guide, was published by Hachette in 2023.


Speaking Topics

Brain Fog or Brain Injury?  Understanding Cognitive Impairment in Long Covid 

Cognitive impairment is a key challenge for patients with Long Covid, impacting as many as 200 million people around the world. Drawing on relevant research and his own clinical experience, Dr. Jackson describes state-of-the-art findings and compelling case studies that highlight what cognitive impairment after Covid “is” and what it “is not.” This lecture will help attendees understand how cognitive impairment develops, what aspects of cognition it affects, its effect on work and relationships, and how it can be treated, relying on insights from the science of neuroplasticity and from rehabilitation.

Understanding Long Covid

It’s estimated that more than 130 million people around the world suffer from Long Covid, more than five times the number of people who live in New York City.  In this lecture, Dr. Jackson will explain what Long Covid is, explain theories pertaining to how it develops, and offer research and clinically based insights on how to treat it.  Drawing from his experience working with “Long Haulers” and from decades of work with medical patients experiencing chronic illnesses, he explains key issues related to Long Covid, with a specific emphasis on cognition, mental health, and family support and on helping patients and families “thrive” and not merely “survive.”

An Unexpected Positive: Post Traumatic Growth in the Age of Long Covid

The pandemic has been stressful and even traumatic. While trauma can affect us negatively and even cause PTSD, it can also be a gateway to new ways of living more positively by fostering closer relationships, increasing our sense of gratitude, and helping us forge a deeper sense of purpose. Positive changes that develop after trauma can lead to what psychologists call “Post Traumatic Growth” or PTG.  Drawing on his own clinical experience, Dr. Jackson introduces key concepts related to PTG, highlighting the ways that Covid-related trauma can lead to PTG, and describes how to foster PTG in individuals, organizations, and cultures.

Trauma and Long Covid:  Creating a Culture of Trauma Informed Care

Many patients with Long Covid have PTSD and many more report experiencing symptoms of trauma, even if they don’t meet the criteria for a formal PTSD diagnosis.  Healthcare providers must engage Long Covid patients using the principles of trauma-informed care – including how trauma impacts people and groups, learning to recognize the signs of trauma, developing systems that can respond to trauma, and avoiding re-traumatization. In this talk, Dr. Jackson offers practical strategies for integrating trauma-informed principles and developing trauma-informed mindsets to better meet the needs of patients with Covid as well as Covid survivors.

The Only Way Around is Through:  The Value of Leaning into Hard Things

As a result of a brief illness that occurred two years before the pandemic, Dr. Jackson developed severe obsessive-compulsive disorder. Its rapid and unexpected emergence upended every aspect of his life and led him on a journey of healing and transformation.  By relying on the principles of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), he found relief in the realization that the way to conquer hard things was through acceptance. In this intimate talk, Dr. Jackson describes his journey from doctor to patient, and how his experience with OCD enabled him to boldly face lifelong fears and transform him into a better person and a more empathic doctor and researcher.

By the author

Booking Info

Dr. James Jackson’s speaking engagements are handled by the Hachette Speakers Bureau, a division of Hachette Book Group and an accredited member of the International Association of Speakers Bureaus. Contact us to learn more.