When you or someone you love is recovering from surgery, illness, or another medical issue that required hospitalization, sometimes the next step in the healing and rehabilitative process takes place in a professional, caring environment. Short-term care facilities provide physical, occupational, and speech therapy services, along with nursing services and staff available to meet patients’ needs 24 hours a day. There are several health centers in San Diego for short-term care, and choosing the right one is a decision that should take many things into consideration beyond medical needs. Here are a few questions to keep in mind while you search:
Length of stay
Minor health issues, such as an uncomplicated surgery, may only require short-term rehab for a few days or a few weeks. In other cases, a patient with advanced medical issues such as cardiac problems may need rehabilitation services that last several months. Some facilities specialize in either short- or long-term care, while others—like Bella Vista Health Center—offer both. This can often be the best option for patients who aim for rapid rehabilitation but understand that recovery could take longer than anticipated.
Room preference: private or shared?
Some patients prefer the privacy of a single room while others value the companionship offered in a shared room. Not all short-term care facilities offer both options, so if you or your loved one feel strongly either way, it’s a good way to narrow down your choices.
The most important thing you can do before choosing a skilled nursing facility is to take a tour to evaluate the levels of comfort, privacy, and professionalism. Aside from the patient rooms, take a look at community areas and ask about social events and activities designed to keep residents engaged and entertained during their stay. Also check out the dining area and menus to ensure meal options are varied, healthy, and amenable to accommodation for special dietary needs, if necessary.
Questions to ask the staff
When you tour a prospective short-term care facility, don’t hesitate to ask the staff challenging questions to ensure all your concerns are addressed. Here are some subjects to ask about:
- Availability of specialized staff for specific medical needs
- Details of the facility’s personalized care plans
- Staff-to-patient ratios
- Expected transition from hospital to rehab
- Outpatient therapy options
- Frequency of care planning meetings
You’ll want to pay close attention not just to the answers but also to the general attitude of the staff members you speak to. If they don’t know the answer to your question, do they brush it off as unimportant, or do they make it a point to find someone who can answer? Do they seem interested in making you feel comfortable or at rushing you through so they can get on to other things? Trust your instincts and take notes about how you feel in each facility as well as the answers provided.
Questions to ask other residents
In addition to talking with the staff at a prospective short-term care facility, it’s a good idea to talk to current residents or past clients to learn about their experiences. Do they find the staff friendly or impersonal? Do they feel they’re making the most progress possible based on therapy programs offered? Another way to evaluate resident experiences is to ask the staff for recent satisfaction survey results and statistics on benchmarked outcomes.
Looking for the best short-term rehab in San Diego?
At Bella Vista Health Center, our rehabilitation services are based on a high level of compassionate care and innovative programming that empowers our patients to reach their recovery goals and regain their quality of life. If you or someone you love needs short-term care following surgery or illness, we encourage you to tour our recently remodeled 5-star skilled nursing facility. Give us a call at (619) 644-1000 or fill out our contact form today.