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Nursing Students May 10, 2024

What is Rehabilitation Nursing?

By: Country Meadows | Nursing and Rehabilitation

Rehabilitation nursing is a philosophy of care, not a work setting or a phase of treatment. With compassion and patience, rehabilitation nurses help patients restore their independence and serve as advocates for patients and their families. Rehabilitation nursing cares for patients with diseases such as ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease), cerebral palsy, Parkinson’s, Guillain-Barre Syndrome, multiple sclerosis (MS), cardiovascular and pulmonary conditions, amputations, brain injuries, burns, cancers and strokes.

Careers in rehabilitation nursing

Rehab nurses are expected to be in high demand as the population ages and hospitals discharge patients earlier for care at skilled nursing and rehab facilities. By 2032, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the field will grow by 5.6%.

Rehab nurses begin their career path with an associate degree in nursing (ADN) or a bachelor of science degree in nursing (BSN). From there, they must successfully complete the licensure exam to become a registered nurse (RN). RNs with experience in rehabilitation nursing are eligible to earn a Certified Rehabilitation Registered Nurse (CRRN) designation from the Association of Rehabilitation Nurses (ARN). Rehabilitation nurses may choose a specialty such as administration, nurse practitioner, clinical nurse leader or consultant.

Rehabilitation nurses work in hospitals, rehab facilities, home health agencies and long-term acute care, as well as skilled nursing facilities. They work as part of an interdisciplinary team with a variety of health care professionals including other nursing specialties, physicians, caregivers, physical, occupational and speech therapists and psychiatrists to provide integrated care.

Rehabilitation nursing roles

Restorative care nurses are often found in skilled nursing facilities or home care agencies. In addition to registered nurses, they may also be LPNs or nursing assistants who provide care aimed at promoting range of motion, activity, increased strength or fitness and confidence, according to the Association of Rehabilitation Nurses.

In addition to assisting patients to regain and maintain their abilities, rehabilitation registered nurses typically manage their patients’ care plan and may direct nursing assistants, patient care technicians (PCTs) and licensed practical nurses (LPNs). For patients and their families, rehabilitation nursing also provides education and advocacy.

Certified Rehabilitation Registered Nurses demonstrate “knowledge, experience, and commitment to excellence in comprehensive care for people with physical disabilities and chronic illnesses in all specialties and settings of rehabilitation,” according to the Association of Rehabilitation Nurses. Currently, there are more than 13,000 Certified Rehabilitation Registered Nurses.

Expert rehabilitation nursing in Bethlehem, Pa.

At Country Meadows Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Bethlehem, Pa., our highly acclaimed rehabilitation nursing program focuses on the individual’s physical, emotional and spiritual needs to create customized plans that meet specific needs through a variety of options.

The 70-bed Medicare certified center has been honored once again as a U.S. News & World Report’s “2023-2024 Best Nursing Home” in its two overall categories for “Best Long-term Care” and “Best Short-Stay Rehabilitation” and consistently ranks above state and national averages in quality for short-stay rehab care. Country Meadows Nursing & Rehabilitation Center has also been honored as a Great Places to Work® certified company.

In addition, Pathways Restorative Services, offered on Country Meadows campuses, provide short- and long-term assistance to people who need more support recovering from an injury or surgery or living with a chronic condition than what is offered through Personal Care. Pathways focuses on individual abilities and achievable goals to help restore a resident’s independence before they need a rehab nursing program.

Call our friendly co-workers to learn more about our rehabilitation nursing in Bethlehem, Pa. and Pathways Restorative Services available at our retirement communities in Pennsylvania and Frederick, Maryland.


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