For stroke patients, early initiation of therapy typically yields the best functional outcomes. Rehabilitation of stroke patients immediately after hospitalization minimizes deleterious effects of immobility and facilitates restoration of function. The investigators are testing if coordinated efforts between the medical and rehabilitation disciplines may improve stroke patient’s functional recovery and subsequent follow-ups after discharge.
Stroke is the fifth leading cause of mortality, claiming the lives of 133,000 individuals in the United States annually. Approximately one-quarter of the 795,000 annual strokes are recurrent. It is estimated that up to 80% of all strokes can be prevented. Forty percent of stroke survivors sustain moderate functional impairments and 15% to 30% sustain severe disability. Approximately 25% of adult stroke patients are readmitted to the hospital within six to twelve months of their preliminary stroke. Identifying and implementing effective medical and rehabilitation interventions is critical in providing care to stroke patients. The goal is to provide optimal, cost-effective care that: 1) prevents secondary medical complications, readmissions, and recurrent disease, and 2) maximizes patient function physically, cognitively, and socially. JFK Johnson Rehabilitation Institute (JRI) proposes a collaborative study with Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (RWJUH) that addresses this issue while proving beneficial to stroke patients at both institutions. Streamlining the physiatry consult process will improve access to rehabilitation medicine specialty care for acute patients at RWJUH and help facilitate the transfer of stroke patients to the next most appropriate level of care.
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