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A recent Webinar Series presented by RehabCare and Team TSI discussed the potential impact of and considerations for therapy services during COVID-19. The webinar presented a study that examined 42 residents involved in therapy services to examine COVID-19’s effect on long term care residents and acute/post-acute residents.

RehabCare and Team TSI

Prior to screening, only 5 of the 42 residents participated in therapy services; however, following a two-week isolation period, that number rose to 24 residents requiring one or more therapy disciplines. Each resident was screened by physical, occupational and speech therapists to assess potential risks from isolation such as decreased mobility and behavioral changes, trends found during a two-week period of strict isolation and functional impact due to COVID-19.

Below are risk areas found following a two-week isolation period:

  • Respiratory issues
  • Deconditioning/Weakness
  • Anxiety/Depression
  • Positioning/Skin integrity
  • Pain
  • Cognitive issues
  • Communication
  • Continence
  • Dysphagia/Safe swallow
  • Mobility
  • Increased rate of falls

It is crucial for therapy departments to implement interventions that include comprehensive and frequent screening, with special attention to the detection of any changes in mood or behavior, depression and changes in urinary continence. In addition, patients in LTC and short-term rehab involving IDT were to receive frequent care to ensure all needs were met.

By using these findings, facilities will be able to pinpoint the needs of residents and tailor activities in order to best serve those in their care. By taking the extra step to provide above and beyond care during these stressful times, facilities can boost morale, increase participation and improve patient well-being.

Staying up to date with patient needs will continue to show lasting results as SNFs across the country continue to combat this pandemic. RehabCare is committed to researching and providing critical information about how facilities can best serve patients impacted by COVID-19. 

Click here to view the full webinar series.

By RehabCare