How Virtual Care Adds Value to Rehabilitation

This year’s National Rehab Awareness Week is Sept 16-22.  The mission of the National Rehabilitation Awareness Foundation (NRAF) is to educate people about the benefits and impact of rehabilitation, develop programs which aim to increase opportunities for the nearly fifty million Americans with disabilities, and help those who are disabled live up to their fullest potential. Rehabilitation is defined as the restoration of an ill or injured person to self-sufficiency. This annual event applauds the efforts of rehab professionals and focuses the nation’s attention on the powers and possibilities of rehabilitation.  Each year, rehabilitation providers come together to celebrate how rehabilitation restores hope, freedom, achievement and success.

The rehabilitation process is comprehensive yet compassionate, with the goal of helping people restore lost skills in order to return to leading active, independent lives. Inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation programs are increasingly leveraging technology to provide patients with the most innovative care that can help patients return home quickly.

Physical medicine and rehabilitation providers are using virtual care technology to deliver care to patients via inpatient and outpatient settings.

  • Video-based virtual visits enable patients with impaired mobility (and patients who live a great distance from rehabilitation facilities) more convenient access to care.
  • Video-based virtual consults help facilitate care collaboration between specialists and onsite providers in a more immediate and cost-effective manner.
  • Virtual care communication platforms facilitate care coordination between a rehabilitation hospital and its network of partner hospitals, outpatient/day clinics, home healthcare / visiting nurse associations, and provider offices.

An interdisciplinary team of providers can focus on optimizing the care for the patient (as well as share best practices amongst each other) by also using HIPAA-compliant emails, text, and SMS to communicate with each other and engage the patient across all points of care.  With the platform, medical staff can coordinate patient care from the ER and hospital admission onto rehabilitative care and post-discharge care-at-home. Virtual care technology can help patients return home sooner and become more self-sufficient by facilitating and improving access to efficient and effective care. With the capacity to provide service across the continuum of care, virtual care platforms can be used at healthcare settings, patient’s homes, schools, and worksites.

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