BridgeCareSuites-Acute Rehab vs. Inpatient Rehab vs. Skilled Nursing

Unexpected medical trauma can be terrifying, such as a stroke, cardiac problems, or severe injury. It is a hurdle for most people to overcome when younger or middle-aged. The obstacle increases as people move into their senior years. It’s all part of being human.

With the assistance of inpatient care, such as acute rehabilitation and skilled nursing rehabilitation, it is possible to return to your daily activities.

Even though they are both inpatient and share a foundational goal of recovery and rehabilitating patient independence, there are different ways each goes about it. 

Inpatient acute and skilled nursing rehabilitation are not exclusive to medical trauma; they are beneficial for recovering from major surgeries or bone fractures. Acute care consists of emergency care, critical care, urgent care, and short-term stabilization. Once a patient is stable and has begun to regain their abilities, they can proceed to a skilled nursing rehabilitation facility where continued recovery efforts and care are provided. 

Inpatient Rehabilitation

Inpatient care or rehabilitation is when a patient is formally admitted into a hospital or skilled nursing facility by a doctor.

Inpatient rehabilitation covers an intense level of immediate care and therapy. It can be thought of as the first or foundational step in recovery. Often, inpatient care in a hospital integrates with other methods of care.

Two main types of inpatient care are acute rehabilitation and skilled nursing rehabilitation. Acute rehabilitation often takes place in the hospital once a patient is stable and capable of participating. Afterward, they are able to transition to either a separate facility for continued inpatient skilled nursing rehabilitation or return home for in-home care or outpatient therapy.

BridgeCareSuites-Acute Rehab vs. Inpatient Rehab vs. Skilled Nursing

Acute Rehabilitation & Skilled Nursing Rehabilitation

Both forms of rehabilitation have several common factors, with the exception of intensity level and different recovery timelines.

Rehabilitation activities and therapies include physical, occupational, and speech-language. A patient may not require all three or may need varying combinations. Both provide wound care, medication management, and collaboration with a primary physician or surgeon for optimized care. Education is essential in acute and skilled nursing rehabilitation.

Professionals will share with the patient and their caregivers (friend, family, or hired) critical risks to be aware of, how to continue care once home, and provide and direct them to resources or specialists outside of the hospital. 

Acute Rehabilitation

Acute care and rehabilitation are generally required when a patient has experienced complex or significant medical trauma, surgery, or illness.

It is a multidisciplinary form of treatment; different experts in varying fields treat the patient independently. Attention is primarily on rehabilitating necessary functioning as quickly as possible. Acute rehabilitation is typically one piece of the whole treatment plan. In critical medical situations, acute rehabilitation is part of the first initiative toward recovery. 

Some qualifying factors for acute rehabilitation to be needed are a medical condition that has significantly decreased a patient’s faculties. Examples of a situation that cause a significant disturbance include, but are not limited to, stroke, spinal cord injury, head trauma or acquired brain injury, amputations, and burns. A patient who is at risk of medical instability will likely be admitted into acute rehab. Because it is located in the hospital, all resources are available on-site if an emergency were to occur. 

Acute rehabilitation generally occurs before the patient is discharged from the hospital.

Often, the care is provided by the attending doctor with the addition of therapy experts. Therapy services average around 3 hours of active participation.  Patients remain admitted as an inpatient until they are stable or physically well enough to transfer to a sub-acute facility or home.

Acute rehabilitation is not designed for long-term care. It is personalized to each patient, and efforts focus on stabilizing the patient and recovering them to a place they can be discharged to a skilled nursing facility or home to receive further care. 

BridgeCareSuites-Acute Rehab vs. Inpatient Rehab vs. Skilled Nursing

Skilled Nursing Rehabilitation

The most significant difference between inpatient, acute, and skilled nursing rehabilitation is around each patient’s recovery timeline.

Skilled nursing rehabilitation facilities are designed to extend the recovery efforts of a patient with the goal of easing the transition between hospital and home. Skilled nursing can be in the form of short or long-term care.

On average, the stay at a short-term skilled nursing rehab facility is 28 days. Despite most skilled nursing rehab services being provided through inpatient methods, skilled nursing can be provided through in-home care. A medical team of licensed nurses, therapists, social workers, and aides collectively treat each patient according to an individualized treatment plan that has been created together with the patient’s physician or surgeon. 

Therapy and care occur on a daily basis through an interdisciplinary lens. Experts in varying lines of work collaborate to rehabilitate and maximize overall functioning, mental wellness, and independence.

The goal of skilled nursing rehabilitation is for each patient to return home in confidence. After being discharged home, ongoing outpatient therapy may still be needed for continued strengthening and progress in recovery. Sometimes referred to as sub-acute care, skilled nursing is less intensive, but patients continue to be monitored and have access to 24-hour care from licensed staff. 

It is important to keep in mind that total independence while participating in exercises or activities related to your therapy is not expected, especially at the beginning. Treatment teams will encourage you to push yourself, but not beyond a limit that will cause harm or any discomfort.

Improvements and expectations for recovery are measured against your condition upon arrival. Everyone is different, heals different, and recovers at different paces. 

Transfer From Acute Rehab to Inpatient Skilled Nursing

Discharge from acute rehabilitation directly home can be a risk for some patients. In these cases, the primary physician or surgeon will put in orders for the patient to be discharged into the care of an inpatient skilled nursing facility.

All therapy and care services are provided on campus, eliminating the hassle of transportation. Recovery doesn’t have to be awful or lonely. The support from others and the staff encourages physical health by incorporating daily cognitive stimulating activities. Skilled nursing provides you with the skills to return home feeling secure and confident in your independence.

BridgeCareSuites-Acute Rehab vs. Inpatient Rehab vs. Skilled Nursing

The supportive, licensed medical team at Bridge Care Suites is eager to help ease the transition process from hospital to home.

The skilled nursing team is dedicated to each and every guest and achieving their goals.

Project ACHIEVE through the Joint Commission Accreditation is designed around the engagement of patients and their families in the transition process. The program establishes and maintains transparency and a working relationship between you and your medical providers.

This means what is important to you in your transition and recovery matters. REALLY. As an accredited organization, the medical providers at Bridge Care Suites will provide clear communication and answer your questions. It’s all about trust.

To get more information on transferring to Bridge Care Suites after the hospital and home discharge planning, fill out their online form or call the staff at (217) 787-0000.