MetroHealth Creates New COVID-19 Rehab Unit

Cleveland - A new rehabilitation unit that opened in April at The MetroHealth System has moved to a larger space on its main campus to accommodate a growing number of COVID-19 patients with the virus who need intensive rehabilitation.

The COVID-19 Rehabilitation Unit, which includes a therapy gym, is currently at full capacity with 11 patients in private rooms. Full acute inpatient rehabilitation services are provided by rehabilitation nurses, therapists, physicians and other specialists. The age range of the patients in the COVID-19 rehab unit is from early 50s to over 90.

“Like many other health systems, we have a great rehab unit,” Dr. Victoria Whitehair, MD, Medical Director of Acute Inpatient Rehabilitation at the MetroHealth Rehabilitation Institute and Assistant Professor of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Case Western Reserve University, said. “But we also regularly treat very medically complex patients. It wasn’t a big leap for us to consider how to provide rehab services for those patients.”

Intensive rehabilitation is an important part of recovery for some patients with COVID-19 who have had lengthy hospital stays or have spent time on a ventilator. Preliminary discussions surrounding a special unit for COVID-19 patients began in mid-March. The rehab unit opened in early April after the extent of the need was better known and after learning from the experiences of hospitals in Italy and New York, Dr. Whitehair said.

In addition to the rehabilitation therapies, patients also receive telehealth visits with Rehabilitation Psychologists.

You can find out more about the rehab unit by clicking here.

Photo courtesy of MetroHealth Medical Center

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