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What factors are important in choosing a rehabilitation facility after a spinal cord injury?

What factors are important in choosing a rehabilitation facility after a spinal cord injury?

David Chen, MD

Medical Director, Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Program, Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago

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I think one of the most important aspects that an individual who has had a spinal cord injury, or their families, should looking for in choosing a rehabilitation facility, is finding a facility that has experience in taking care of individuals with s... Show More

I think one of the most important aspects that an individual who has had a spinal cord injury, or their families, should looking for in choosing a rehabilitation facility, is finding a facility that has experience in taking care of individuals with spinal cord injuries. Estimates today are that about 10,000-12,000 individuals per year experience spinal cord injuries. You can compare that to cancer, and to heart disease where hundreds of thousands, if not millions of individuals are newly treated, or ongoing treated for that type of condition. So because of that, not every rehabilitation facility, not every physiatrist, necessarily has extensive experience in taking care of individuals with spinal cord injuries. And so, to optimize an individual’s rehabilitation—to give them the proper education about what has happened to them, what can they expect in the near term and in the future, and what do they need long term to optimize hopefully their recovery, and their functional mobilites—you want to be treated at a facility, or by a facility that has that experience. Most importantly, talk to the individuals, whether it be the staff, whether it be the nurses, whether it be the physicians, who work with those individuals. Ask them questions about how many individuals that they treat per year in their center. Ask them about what their experience has been in their outcomes with individuals who have been treated in their facility. And you’ll get a sense, sort of, from that conversation about their comfort level, and their experience treating individuals with these type of conditions.

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What factors are important in choosing a rehabilitation facility after a spinal cord injury?

David Chen, MD

Medical Director, Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Program, Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago

More Videos by David Chen
Transcriptadd

I think one of the most important aspects that an individual who has had a spinal cord injury, or their families, should looking for in choosing a rehabilitation facility, is finding a facility that has experience in taking care of individuals with spinal cord injuries. Estimates today are that about 10,000-12,000 individuals per year experience spinal cord injuries. You can compare that to cancer, and to heart disease where hundreds of thousands, if not millions of individuals are newly treated, or ongoing treated for that type of condition. So because of that, not every rehabilitation facility, not every physiatrist, necessarily has extensive experience in taking care of individuals with spinal cord injuries. And so, to optimize an individual’s rehabilitation—to give them the proper education about what has happened to them, what can they expect in the near term and in the future, and what do they need long term to optimize hopefully their recovery, and their functional mobilites—you want to be treated at a facility, or by a facility that has that experience. Most importantly, talk to the individuals, whether it be the staff, whether it be the nurses, whether it be the physicians, who work with those individuals. Ask them questions about how many individuals that they treat per year in their center. Ask them about what their experience has been in their outcomes with individuals who have been treated in their facility. And you’ll get a sense, sort of, from that conversation about their comfort level, and their experience treating individuals with these type of conditions.

What factors are important in choosing a rehabilitation facility after a spinal cord injury?
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