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Questions to Ask When Choosing a Short-Term Rehab Facility

A senior woman doing physical therapy exercises.

After a hospital stay, some seniors may not be ready to return to daily life. You may need additional care and therapy before you go home. Short-term rehab provides a place to help you make a smooth transition. A step down from hospital care, these facilities offer skilled nursing, physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and more to give you the support you need to heal.

If you have a planned surgery, you’ll have time before your hospital stay to get to know more about your rehab choices. For unexpected hospital stays, your loved ones may need to help gather details on each facility. Either way, ask several questions as you make your choice.

9 questions to ask during your tour of short-term rehab facility

Whether you visit in person or virtually, bring a list of questions. After you visit with a few different facilities, these questions will help you compare your options.

  1. Can I use insurance or Medicare?
    You want to be sure the facility you choose makes sense financially. Ask if the community can help verify your insurance benefits. That way, you know ahead of time what is covered. For those with Medicare, you’ll need to meet specific criteria for short-term rehab coverage. Learn more about those benefits at Medicare.gov.
  2. Do you have a particular area of focus?
    From orthopedics to stroke, ask how the facility cares for your specific condition. Therapists can earn certifications in a variety of treatments and care types. So get to know what areas of expertise the therapists at the location have. Talk through how the facility will customize the program for your needs.
  3. Who helps plan my care?
    The steps needed to get you back to daily living should be a focus from the start. Look for a location that has a social worker to help with care planning. This provides clear goals and timelines for your care. You’ll also want care planning to be a family affair. Make sure your loved ones are included in the conversation.
  4. Who will provide my care?
    Qualified, dedicated staff is a must. Ask about the different staff specialties, such as nursing, physical and occupational therapy, social work, and patient navigation. You should also ask about the ratio of certified nursing assistants, licensed practical nurses, and registered nurses compared to patients.
  5. What can I bring with me?
    Your facility should make you feel at home. Most facilities provide toiletry items and linens like you would find at a hotel. Ask if you can bring a few comfort items from home, such as pictures or a pillow. Instead of hospital gown, you’ll also be able to wear your own clothes, pajamas, and closed-toed shoes.
  6. What amenities are available?
    You may spend over a month in short-term rehab. So ask about the other amenities available to help you feel comfortable. You may have access to outdoor areas, internet, common areas, or amenities like a hair salon. If it is important to you, ask about pet visits or places for a guest to stay.
  7. When should I expect to have therapy?
    Talk through what your daily schedule might look like at the facility. For example, you should expect a facility that provides therapy services five days a week.
  8. How do I transition from hospital to rehab?
    Look for a location that has a community liaison and process in place to easily transfer you. After your physician orders short-term rehab care, you’ll move from the hospital to rehab. From there, you should be evaluated by your new care team within the first 24 hours.
  9. Do you offer outpatient services when I leave the facility?
    It’s common to need outpatient therapy after short-term rehab. Your social worker or therapy team should make recommendations about further care needs. Ask if your facility offers outpatient services. This can make the transition home even easier.

Choosing the right short-term rehab facility

You and your family know your needs best. Above all, you want a facility that provides the right services for you. That way, you can focus on healing. Ask any additional questions about services that are essential to you. And take into account your overall feeling about each location. The right environment can also help you recover better.

At Signature Pointe, we’re focused on getting seniors back to what they love. Our Dallas short-term rehab services work with you and your family to help you heal and restore your confidence. Contact us today to learn more about our short-term rehab services.