Whats Right For Me?

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Center at Northridge, The

For more information about the author, click to view their website: The Center at Northridge

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Jul 13, 2022

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Colorado - Denver Metro

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Hospital stays, planned or unplanned, are never a first choice for a vacation.  Despite our desire to be relaxing on a beach or enjoying the mountains, you or someone you love will unfortunately end up spending time in a hospital.  Once stable, hospital patients frequently say the same thing, “I just want to go home.” 

When you are in a hospital, your road home may be direct, or it may include a short detour to a short-term rehabilitation center/skilled nursing facility.  Safety and function are two key points to consider when choosing the best road home.

Acute hospitals have the staff, equipment and expertise to care for unstable patients.  The need for acute hospital care ends once the patient is stable.  With advances in medicine, the amount of time needed to become “stable” is getting shorter and shorter.  Families are often surprised at how fast their loved one discharges from the hospital.  This is because stable patients are not always safe patients, which is a concern for both patients and families.  If a patient is stable, but not safe to go home, they will most likely need additional time at a short-term rehabilitation center/skilled nursing facility to regain their safety. Physical function is another area needing consideration when deciding if going home is the right choice.  

If the patient can independently perform basic “activities of daily living,” they will most likely go directly home. If they need help with these activities, a quick stay at a short-term rehabilitation center/skilled nursing facility is key.  Examples of these basic activities are eating, drinking, using the restroom, transferring between positions such as, lying to sitting, sitting to standing, standing to sitting, and walking.  These basic functions can be lost during an extended hospital stay.  This is normal and easily remedied with a quick stay at a short-term rehabilitation center/skilled nursing facility. If you find yourself in a situation where your safety or function is keeping you from going home, remember that a stay at a short-term rehabilitation center/skilled nursing facility is exactly what you need.  Your hospital case manager will help you navigate your road home.  I highly recommend having someone tour at least three short-term rehabilitation centers/skilled nursing facilities on your behalf to find the one that fits your unique need.

Editor’s Note: This article was submitted by Troy Hamler, N.H.A. Troy Hamler is the Executive Director for The Center at Northridge and may be reached at 303-280-4444.

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The Center at Northridge serves patients needing physical rehabilitation and/or complex nursing care. Our highly qualified, caring staff provide care in a beautiful, hotel-like atmosphere to help our patients achieve strength and functionality. Skilled-nursing care, family involvement, psychological care and discharge planning complement a well-rounded, individualized program and encourage each patient's transition to their highest functional level.With state-of-the-art equipment and unparalleled comfort and amenities, our physician-driven care plan is designed to maximize the quality of our care.

Center at Northridge, The

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