Paralysis can be a traumatic consequence of many serious accidents if the victim suffers a spinal cord injury or a brain injury that affects the part of his brain controlling his limbs. After a person’s initial treatment in the hospital, he will most likely need to go to a rehabilitation center before returning home. Finding a quality rehabilitation center can affect the person’s rate of recovery, his ability to reintegrate into his life and society and his long-term outcome.
Three Steps to Picking a Quality Rehabilitation Center
The paralysis victim may not be well enough to arrange his rehabilitation, and his family may need to do this for him. Key considerations in choosing a facility include:
Check out the staff.
The lead doctor should have experience caring for patients with brain and spinal cord injuries and should specialize in physical medicine and rehabilitation. The other staff should also specialize in this care. Find out the doctor’s credentials, whether there is round-the-clock doctor care, and who will coordinate the person’s treatment and act as a contact person for the patient and his family.
Inspect the facility.
The center should be accredited with the Commission of the Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities or the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations. It is best if the facility has patients in the same age group and with similar injuries as the accident victim. Look to see if the center has resources to help the patient learn independent living skills, such as a laundry room, kitchen, and recreational facilities.
Study program elements.
Basic elements of a good program will include at least three hours of treatment per day, round-the-clock rehabilitation nursing and respiratory care, and special programs such as drivers education and therapeutic recreation. It should also provide a full schedule of evening and weekend activities for patients and programs to include the family in the accident victim’s recovery.
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