Choosing a Rehabilitation Facility
Choosing the right rehabilitation facility can make a difference in how fully – and how quickly – patients are able to resume their activities following treatment for a ruptured brain aneurysm. Guided by the patient’s medical team, patients and caregivers can find the best resource to achieve optimal outcomes for recovery and develop strategies to cope with their new situations.
In considering rehabilitation options for individuals who have experienced brain injury following an aneurysm, it’s important that family members feel confident and informed about the services and care that are available. While specific options will depend on a patient’s individual circumstances, including geographic location and insurance coverage, a number of features apply to all rehab programs. If possible, it can be helpful to compare several rehabilitation programs to help you make the best decision for your family member.
Questions to Ask About Rehab Facilities
- How many patients are admitted to your brain injury program each year?
- How many patients has the facility treated with injuries similar to those of your family member?
- What is the average age of the patients undergoing treatment for brain injury and are patients in the program of approximately the same age as your family member?
- Is the facility equipped to manage life-threatening emergencies on-site?
- Does the facility offer services for every stage of recovery, including intensive care, inpatient rehabilitation and outpatient services?
- How often and for how long each day do patients receive specialized treatments, for example by physical therapists and speech therapists? (In total, specialized treatments should be no less than three hours per day)
- Are activities planned for patients on weekends and evenings?
- Does the facility have full-time clinical educators for staff training to ensure that the latest therapeutic interventions are being offered?
- Is there a medical doctor available 24 hours a day to oversee care if a patient has a sudden decline or to manage infections such as UTIs and pneumonia?
For Family Members
- Are family members encouraged to participate in the patient’s rehabilitation and to what extent?
- Does the facility offer family education programs to prepare family members for caregiving responsibilities when the patient returns home?
- Are living arrangements available for family members who are participating in patients’ rehabilitation?
Questions About Outcomes
- What percent of your patients return to home or community programs rather than long-term care facilities? How does that compare with other treatment centers?
- Rehabilitation hospitals measures patient results in terms of “functional improvement.” What is the facility’s average functional independence measure (FM) ?
- What is the average length of stay for patients with brain injuries similar to those of my family member?
Points to Note While Visiting the Facility
- Were staff members friendly and helpful when information was requested?
- Were you offered an opportunity to tour the facility?
- What were your impressions of the facility’s overall atmosphere?
- Did you have the opportunity to speak with patients and family members currently participating in the program? Were they satisfied with their rehabilitation services?