In a smaller community hospital there is a greater opportunity for staff and patients to become familiar with the staff providing their care. As therapists, we have excellent working relationships with your nurses and other care providers. We have direct access to your physicians and are able to discuss any concerns and recommendations that may impact your care or discharge plan.
We provide care within your room, your hospital unit, or even our outpatient therapy gym as needed. We are able to assess your safety to return to your prior living condition, make activity recommendations, and work with your social worker on discharge recommendations. Many of our therapists work in multiple settings and may even follow you through the continuum of care from acute care to inpatient rehab to outpatient services.
Acute Therapy Services
Within the acute care environment, we are able to provide physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and wound care services. It is not uncommon to become very weak during an illness or extended hospital stay. We are also able to offer recommendations for alternate discharge destinations if you further assistance or therapy services after you are released from the hospital.
- Our physical therapists will assess your strength, range of motion, walking and balance. If balance is of concern, they may use standardized tests to predict your likelihood of having falls as well as the need to use an assistive device to decrease your fall risk.
- Our occupational therapists will assess your ability to care for yourself, including dressing, grooming, hygiene tasks and toileting. They are also very adept at assessing and educating on energy conservation, home adaptations, and ergonomics.
- Our speech and language pathologists address concerns with cognition (thinking), speaking, and swallowing. They can assess swallowing via a bedside study or bring you down to the x-ray department for a more complete test as needed. If swallowing is a problem, they will instruct you in specific strategies that may help and make food recommendations as well.
- Our physical therapists also provide wound care within the acute care setting. Their expertise is requested when wounds contain dead tissue or are very complicated. We are able to initiate and follow wound vacs, and use many advanced dressings and treatment options. We routinely share wound care with the nursing staff to provide well-rounded patient care.
These services are added upon the recommendation of your physician or other care providers. If you have specific concerns about mobility, strength, speech, swallowing, ability to care for yourself, and ability to return home, please ask to speak with a social worker or ask to have therapy services initiated.
Once services are initiated, therapists will come to your room within 12 business “hours” of your consultation being ordered. We are typically in the acute care units between 8am and 4:30pm
During therapy sessions, there may be an increase in symptoms, including pain, dizziness, and fatigue. We will work with nursing to pre-medicate as needed and will communicate any concerns. We tailor treatment lengths and times to each patient’s needs.
During and following your session, your therapist will discuss your goals and concerns with you along with ask you several questions about your prior function. They will complete a full evaluation, which may include getting out of bed, performing activities you would normally perform at home, ask to watch you eat (for swallowing difficulties) or ask you questions geared towards problem solving. Following your therapy sessions, they will let you know what their goals are, what they will be working with you on, and how often they will be in see you. They then document their findings, including discharge recommendations, which is then reviewed by your physician and social worker (if appropriate).