Your 88-year old-father is in good health overall, but a fall and hospitalization have left him weak and in need of extra care. After ten days, he’s stable enough to leave the hospital but not ready to come home. This is where acute care rehab in an inpatient facility can be a lifesaver. This important step between hospital and home is often the key to a successful recovery. But many patients and families don’t fully understand how acute care works and how it differs from long term care.
What Is Acute Care?
Hospitals usually discharge patients as soon as they are in stable condition. However, in many cases, patients need more time to recover under medical supervision. Short term rehab care is often essential to the transition from hospital to home. Acute care includes both nursing care for basic medical and personal needs and a range of therapies including physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech and language therapy designed to move patients back to independence. Most patients stay for a month to six weeks, giving them time to heal and regain strength.
What is the Difference Between Acute Care and Long Term Care?
When patients are unsafe or unable to live at home or when they have chronic conditions that can be managed but not cured, long term care is often recommended. These patients are generally too weak to care for themselves at home or have memory loss issues that make in-home care impossible. Some of the chronic conditions that require long term care include COPD, Congestive Heart Failure and Dementia or Alzheimer’s Disease
Acute or short term rehab is a temporary inpatient stay with a focus on recovery, usually following a hospitalization. Patients are usually weak or disabled and need to regain strength in an inpatient setting while getting help with wound care, medications and personal care.
What Conditions Require Acute Care?
Patients in acute care rehab are often seniors, but ages and conditions run the gamut. Our patients range from elderly individuals recovering from a fall to younger patients recovering from a heart attack, stroke or injury. We work to meet every patient’s individual needs and offer them the therapies they need to recover. Some of the most common conditions requiring acute rehab care include:
- Heart attack
- Hip or knee replacement
- Brain or spinal cord injury
- Injuries from a fall
- Post-surgical recovery
- New limb prosthesis
What Are the Benefits of Acute Care?
Inpatient acute care is focused on helping patients get stronger and more functional so that they’re ready to come home. The crucial combination of skilled nursing services and therapies in an inpatient setting gives patients the time and support they need to recover safely. Acute care rehab can often prevent rehospitalization by making sure patients are truly ready, mentally and physically, to go home. Some of the benefits include:
Skilled nursing care including medication management, oxygen therapy and wound therapy.
Physical and occupational therapy in a safe setting. This allows patients to push themselves safely and recover faster.
Personal care including meals and bathing. This gives patients and caregivers time to prepare for the return home.
A comprehensive discharge plan, developed by your acute care rehab team, to help you make the transition home.
How Much Does Acute Care Cost?
In most cases, Medicare covers the cost of acute care rehab for eligible seniors following a hospital stay. Many private insurances and Medicaid also cover the cost of short term care when ordered by a doctor. Our business office has a wealth of experience in dealing with Medicare and other insurers and is available to help with any questions our patients or caregivers have.
Acute Care Rehab at Evergreen Health & Rehab
At Evergreen, we offer comprehensive long term care services, but most of our clients come to us for acute care rehab needs. It’s our deeply satisfying mission to help patients as they begin their road to recovery. We make sure your medical needs are being met so that you can focus on healing and give you a safe environment to challenge yourself during physical therapy under the supervision of our professional team. We work closely with area hospitals and families to make sure patients transition smoothly following the trauma of an injury or medical event.