The Rehab team stepped up!

Our Rehab team consists of Physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists, a Speech Language Therapist as well as Therapy Assistants. The vital services they provide had to be maintained during the pandemic. The Rehab therapists and assistants worked hard to adapt their treatments to the changing reality at the Hospital. Despite being anxious about this new unknown virus, the team quickly figured how to perform their treatments while ensuring their safety and the safety of their patients.

The therapy team works in collaboration with the patient and their personal support network, but with limited visiting the team had to work the phone lines to continue to provide patient-centred care. Through these phone calls, the team was able to include the support network in discharge planning conversations. This helped to understand any challenges as well as provide education in how to best support the patient once home.

Our Rehab team worked diligently with all patients on the medical, surgical and ICU units including those patients who were COVID+. The team assessed and treated their functional mobility, cognition and swallowing for when they would be recovered and discharged back home. Our therapists play a large role in discharge planning, alongside the interdisciplinary team including care coordinators, nurses, physicians and our social workers. As processes changed and they were allowed to send patients to rehabilitation programs once more, the team quickly altered their practices as required to support the best recovery options for our patients.

The therapy team also covered duties of other staff who were off work in self-isolation and those whose jobs changed due to COVID-19. The team took on daily cleaning of high-touch surfaces and delivered food trays to patients throughout the hospital. They also continued to support the nursing staff and the interdisciplinary team when there were staff shortages. In short, Rehab didn’t step aside, they stepped up. Isn’t that what a good team does in a crisis?

This story originated on Guelph General Hospital’s Facebook page on July 28th, 2020 as part of its #behindthemask series to share how the Hospital is working hard to protect patients and visitors from #COVID19.