A physician, nurse, and various team members will evaluate a patient upon admission. The results of these evaluations, along with information about health status and medical history, will be used to provide a baseline of data from which the patient and rehabilitation team can develop goals and a plan of care.
Patients will be asked questions about their goals for rehabilitation. These goals should be challenging, but also realistic. Patients should be able to accomplish goals in a reasonable amount of time. Some goals may be attainable by the discharge date and other goals will continue to be worked on at home or in another setting.
A patient’s plan of care is unique to their situation, needs, and goals. A therapy schedule will be based on the plan of care and therapists will select specific programs and activities that enable the patient to achieve their goals. The plan of care will be revised as needed to reflect medical status and progress and will be discussed with the patient/family on a regular basis. The team meets on a weekly basis to review patient progress and adjust the plan as needed.
Patient rooms are located on 24-bed disability-specific units. The nurse’s station is located in the center of the unit
A Typical Day
Each morning, patients dress in their own clothes and are served breakfast. Patients participate in at least three hours of therapy, following the assigned therapy schedule. Lunch takes place at about 12:00 noon, and therapy generally ends for the day about 3:30 p.m. Patients are then free to rest, relax, spend time with visitors or take advantage of any of the amenities or services offered. Dinner is generally served at 4:45 p.m.
Discharge planning begins for each patient on the day of admission. Each patient actively participates in this process along with their case manager, treatment team, and family members and/or caregivers. Our goal is to make all the arrangements that patients and families will need in order to ensure a successful transition home. This includes referrals or appointments for follow-up care or home care.
The hospital’s discharge time is 10:00 a.m.
The Rehabilitation Team
An interdisciplinary treatment team of physicians, nurses, therapists and other professionals focus on ensuring that patients achieve as complete a recovery as possible, including relearning activities of daily living and regaining maximum mobility and independence. The PATIENT is the most important member of the rehab team, which may include the following members.
A board certified physician, with a specialty appropriate to patient needs, directs the team. The physician meets with the patient and family to discuss individual needs and will call on other hospital physicians to address any other issues. The hospital’s medical staff specializes in rehabilitation and includes neurologists, cardiologists, rheumatologists and physiatrists.
The Clinical Program Director oversees and coordinates all therapy programs. The Program Director ensures that all persons served meet the criteria for admission to the program, receive an appropriate individualized, interdisciplinary treatment program, receive a minimum of 3 hours of comprehensive therapy a day and ensures achievement of the predicted outcomes.
Patients receive nursing care 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Many nurses are certified in rehabilitation nursing. The nurse manager oversees all of the nursing staff on the team. She or he is joined by a primary nurse, who will be responsible for coordinating all aspects of daily care, a nurse practitioner, and a health care assistant (HCA) or Certified Nurses Aide (CNA). The nursing staff will assist with medications, bathing, dressing, and will reinforce skills learned in therapy and educate a patient about their diagnosis and related conditions.
Physical Therapist (P.T.)
A licensed and registered physical therapist works as part of the team to help restore mobility and function that may have been lost due to injury, illness or disability. Therapy will occur in individual treatment sessions. If appropriate, a group session may also be included. Therapists may incorporate family/caregiver(s) into training sessions to assure a safe discharge home. Prior to leaving, he/she will assess adaptive equipment (wheelchair, walker, cane etc.) needs and assist with acquisition of suggested equipment.
Occupational Therapist (O.T.)
A licensed and registered occupational therapist works to achieve the greatest level of independence in self-care and daily activities. Therapy programs consist of selected activities and exercises that are intended to improve ability to function safely at home and in the community. Occupational Therapy will occur in individual treatment sessions and as appropriate, a group session may also be included.
In addition to working on basic skills such as bathing and dressing, patients have the opportunity to practice cooking and home management skills. The O.T. will also obtain splints and adaptive equipment as needed.
Speech Language Pathologist (S.L.P.)
Licensed and registered speech therapists hold American Speech and Hearing Association Clinical Certificates of Competence. The therapist works as part of your team to help restore swallowing, speech and language function that may have been lost due to injury, illness or disability. Therapy will occur in individual treatment sessions. If appropriate, a speech group session may also be included. The therapist may incorporate family/caregiver(s) into treatment sessions to assist with treatment goals and to assure safe discharge.
Therapists provide both treatment and diversional recreation services. Treatment is planned to help improve function and independence as well as reduce the effects of injury or illness. The recreation therapist works with patient and family to include specific leisure interests and community recreation resources into therapy to achieve outcomes that transfer to real life situations. Diversional services offered include pet therapy, performing arts program, group leisure activities and special events. A monthly calendar of events is posted.
All patients are assigned a case manager who will meet with them shortly after admission. The case manager can answer questions related to insurance, Medicare or Medicaid coverage and will advise the patient/family of the treatment team’s recommendations for care after discharge. He/she will discuss the available options and make referrals to appropriate agencies or facilities.
Each respiratory therapist is licensed and may hold national credentials. If the doctor has ordered respiratory treatments, suctioning, and/or oxygen, a respiratory therapist will administer treatments.
A licensed pharmacist will provide the medications ordered by the doctor.
A registered dietician will plan a diet and meals based on the patient’s needs and desires. They may visit with the patient to assess preferences and discuss options or supplements.
A rehabilitation psychologist may see a patient to assist with the changes affecting daily life as a result of injury or illness. They can help patient and family members to address issues of depression, anger, pain, sexuality, sleep difficulty and much more.
A patient may be referred to a Neuropsychologist if there are difficulties with memory, attention and/or problem solving skills.
Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor
A licensed counselor will be available to assist if a referral is needed to the State Vocational Rehabilitation Program for follow up services after hospital discharge.
Family members and caregivers are considered an integral part of the rehabilitation process and we strongly encourage their active involvement. They may attend therapy sessions to observe, or receive training and/or instruction from a therapist so they will understand what to expect on the return home. They may also meet with the patient’s case manager to make arrangements for discharge.
For those patients who need assistance paying for their services, Helen Hayes Hospital offers payment options, including payment plans, appropriate referrals to Social Services for Medical Assistance, or charity care for eligible applicants. They may contact our financial counselor to discuss a payment option that best suits their qualifications at (845)786-4413.
If there is a special need, concern or problem, or question about the patient stay, please do not hesitate to contact our Patient Relations office at 845-786-4210. The office is open Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Telephone messages may be left after hours. The patient representative is also available to assist the family on any topic of concern.