The JFK Johnson Rehabilitation Institute offers inpatient and outpatient treatment, unique support services, and cutting edge technology and techniques to maximize recovery.
Located adjacent to JFK Medical Center, our spinal cord patients have around the clock access to comprehensive and extensive medical and behavioral services. The interdisciplinary team will work with you to maximize your recovery as you move through the stages of recovery. Our expert rehabilitation specialists are highly skilled in treating all aspects of Spinal Cord Injury and associated complications such as skin integrity, spasticity, bowel and bladder issues, autonomic dysreflexia, and musculoskeletal and neuropathic pain issues. We assist patients with maintaining and strengthening muscle function, redevelop fine motor skills and teach adaptive techniques to accomplish tasks. By embracing a shared goal, we join our patients in meeting their individual goals – returning to a favorite hobby, participating in social or fitness activities, or going back to school or work.
Scope of Service – Spinal Cord Injury Specialty Program
Individuals who have sustained a spinal cord injury (SCI), complete or incomplete, below the level of C5, who do not require ventilator support. The etiology can be traumatic or non -traumatic, with or without co -morbid conditions. If the SCI was attributed to a tumor, the individual cannot be receiving concurrent chemotherapy during the inpatient admission.
Comprehensive Integrated Inpatient Rehabilitation unit, or Outpatient program.
Hours of Service
Inpatient unit – 24 hour/7 day per week nursing care, and physician availability. 3 hours a day/5 days a week of Physical/Occupational and/or Speech Therapy.
Social Workers are available Monday -Friday 9 am -5:30 pm, and for 4 hours on Saturday
Rehabilitation Nursing available on the inpatient unit 24 hours/day, 7 days a week.
Rehabilitation Physician services available on the inpatient unit 24 hours/day, 7 days a week.
Inpatient unit – Services are available Sunday -Saturday, 365 days a year.
Outpatient Therapy – Monday -Friday
Frequency of Services
Inpatient unit – Physical, Occupational, and/or Speech therapy 5 days per week, for a combined total of 3 hours per day.
Outpatient Therapy – Physical and Occupational Therapy individualized based on physician prescription, although most patients are scheduled for 2 -3 visits per week, for 30 -60 minute sessions.
Rehabilitation Nursing provides services continuously throughout the day.
Rehabilitation Physician’s generally see each patient at a minimum of once daily.
Social Workers schedule visits with patients and family members based on individual need.
The following services are available as needed on the inpatient unit, on an individualized schedule: recreation therapy, rehabilitation psychology, medical consultations, nutrition counseling.
Payer and funding Sources/ Referral Sources
Patients in these programs are referred from hospital and physician providers throughout the following areas: HMH network; local, regional, statewide, national, and international facilities and providers. Payers include both government sponsored (Medicare, Medicaid), as well as third party payers, including commercial insurances, workers’ compensation, motor vehicle insurance, and private/self pay. All insurances are verified for coverage prior to the initiation of services.
All insurances are verified for coverage prior to the initiation of services. Any out of pocket expenses or fees would be discussed with the patient/patient’s representative prior to admission into the program.
Specific Services offered: (all services provided directly unless specified)
Medical/physiological sequelae include:
Services to address: Abnormal tone, autonomic dysfunction, bladder function, body composition, bowel function, circulation, dysphagia, fertility (referred to specialist), infection management, medication, men’s health issues, musculoskeletal complications, neurological changes, nutrition, pain, respiration, sexual function (provided directly and/or referred to specialist), skin integrity, women’s health issues.
Functional services include:
Activities of daily living, assistive technology (provided directly and/or referred to specialist), behavior, cognition, communication, community integration, driving, durable medical equipment, emergency preparedness, environmental modifications, leisure and recreation, mobility, occupation, orthoses, personal care assistants (referrals made in conjunction with patient’s interests), prostheses, seating.
Psychosocial services include:
Adjustment to disability, behavioral health, substance use, family/support system counseling, peer support services, sexual adjustment.
Education and training:
Provided for the person served, families/support systems, the community, and the professional community.
Ability to learn about current research, and ability to participate
Transitions across the lifespan
education and training provided by all tem members on transitions through the lifespan based on areas of expertise.
Available through the rehabilitation social worker and rehabilitation physician
Comprehensive Spinal Cord Services
Board-certified rehabilitation medicine physicians with specialized training and expertise in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Inpatient rehabilitation program providing intensive therapies and 24-hour rehabilitation nursing care
Outpatient rehabilitation program providing one-on-one care including traditional and aquatic rehabilitation therapies
Three convenient locations in Edison, Metuchen and Monroe – New Jersey
Specialized areas also include Spasticity Management, Pain Management and Orthotic Evaluation (custom braces)
Wheelchair and seating assessment/prescription by a team of experts, including rehabilitation medicine physicians, occupational therapists, and representative from a wheelchair company
Driver Training Program conducted by Occupational Therapists (Certified Driver Training Specialists) to evaluate and assess for the ability to return to driving
JFK for Life Health & Fitness Center offering medically based and supervised fitness programs at the completion of rehabilitation.
Dedicated to the Highest Quality
Our interdisciplinary team uses evidence-based best practices to deploy proven interventions for patients that help to prevent pressure ulcers, as well as enhance the healing process of existing wounds. As a result, our acquired pressure ulcer rate is consistently below national rates, and our healing rate for existing pressure ulcers is 96%. We also utilize the JFK Center for Wound Healing for appropriate patients in their treatment plan, offering the specialized services to evaluate and treat chronic, non-healing wounds.
Q. What are the effects of a spinal cord injury?
A. The effects of SCI depend on the type of injury and the level of injury. A complete injury means there is no sensation and no voluntary movement below the level of the injury and therefor no function An incomplete injury means that there is some sparing of sensation or voluntary movement below the level of injury. For example, a person in an incomplete injury may be able to move one limb more than the other or may be they can feel parts of the body that cannot be moved.
Q. How does the level of injury affect a person’s function?
A. Although function may vary generally injuries to the cervical (neck) injuries usually result in quadriplegia where the arms, legs and trunk muscles are affected and breathing can also be affected. Injuries at the thoracic level and below result in paraplegia, with the hands not affected. Some patients may have poor trunk control as the result of lack of abdominal muscle control. Lower thoracic spine injuries allow good truck control and good abdominal muscle control. Sitting balance is very good. Lumbar and Sacral injuries result in decreased control or weakness of the legs.
Q. Is there a cure for SCI?
A. Currently there is no cure for SCI. There are many researchers attacking this problem. Many of the most exciting advances have resulted in a decrease in damage at the time of the injury.
Q. HOW LONG CAN YOU EXPECT TO STAY AT THE REHABILITATION INSTITUTE?
The average stay (in 2019) for all patients was 14.64 days. For patients who were admitted with a diagnosis of SCI, the average length of stay was 14.84days.
Q. WHAT CAN I EXPECT TO BE ABLE TO DO FOR MYSELF WHEN I LEAVE THE REHABILITATION INSTITUTE?
All patients are evaluated to see how much help they need to do functional activities (like walking, moving from lying down to sitting up, getting dressed, etc) when they arrive and leave the Rehabilitation Institute. These are the basis of your predicted outcomes, or your individual rehabilitation goals. Based on this evaluation of our patients discharged in 2019, a majority of patients who had a spinal cord injury were able to do the following at discharge:
Self Care: At admission most patients required about 75% help from a staff (bathing, dressing, and eating) member, and at discharge required 25% or less physical help.
Mobility: At admission most patients required about 100% help from a staff (walking, member and at discharge required only 50% or less help. going up/down stairs)
Transfers: At admission most patients required 75% help from a staff, (moving from bed to chair, member and at discharge required 25% or less physical help. into the bathtub, etc)
Q. WHERE CAN I EXPECT TO GO WHEN I AM READY TO LEAVE THE REHABILITATION INSTITUTE?
It is our goal to return all of our patients back to their own homes, whenever possible. For patients who were admitted with a diagnosis of SCI in 2019, 61% were discharged directly home. Most patients continue to receive follow up therapy services after they are discharged home.
Some of our patients with a SCI diagnosis had unplanned transfers to an acute medical facility (16.6%) overall. Other SCI patients were discharged to a subacute rehabilitation facility (23)%).
Q. HOW SATISFIED ARE FORMER PATIENTS WITH THE SERVICES THEY RECEIVED AT THE REHABILITATION INSTITUTE?
When a patient is discharged from the Rehabilitation Institute, they receive a Patient Satisfaction Questionnaire. Patients answer the questions on a scale of 1-5 rating their satisfaction with program services in many areas. The highest rating is a score of 100%
Overall Satisfaction (combined Excellent and Very Good Responses) for patients admitted with a diagnosis of stroke, 100%.
Q. HOW ARE SOME SCI PATIENTS DOING APPROXIMATELY 3 MONTHS AFTER DISCHARGE FROM THE JFK JOHNSON REHABILITATION INSTITUTE?
All patients who are discharged with the diagnosis of SCI are mailed a follow up survey approximately 3 months after discharge. In 2019, we had 6 surveys returned, or 4.0% of those mailed. Here are the results, in percentages, for the questions/and or topics asked.
Patients who were re-admitted to the hospital for any reason: 0%
Patients who resumed driving and returned to work: 100%
Eating, moving around inside the house, getting in and out of bed: 100% needed no help
Patients who could attend all scheduled follow up and therapy visits: 100%
Patient who participate in social activities outside of the house: 80%
Coping with disability since discharge: excellent 20%, good 60%, fair 20%
Interfaith Network of Care Inc. – New Jersey nonprofit organization that provides personal and social support to people coping with chronic health conditions or disabilities and their caregivers.
SpinalCord.com – Discusses caregiver stress and how to juggle your role as a caregiver with various coping strategies and links to additional resources for further support.
Family Caregiver Alliance – State-by-state navigation to help family caregivers locate public, nonprofit, and private programs and services nearest their loved one.
Shepherd Center – Educational materials regarding various aspects of spinal cord injury for patients, family members, and caregivers.
Friends Health Connection – Organization that provides support, education, and information for individuals with health problems and their families.
Facing Disability – Designed to connect families facing spinal cord injuries to help them cope with the changing realities of their lives. Provides extensive resources for family and caregiver support.
Well Spouse Association – Organization serving the needs of spousal caregivers. Excellent resources for finding local support groups, encouraging articles, mentoring opportunities, meetings, conferences, and respite weekends.
Employment And Advocacy
Abilities of Northwest Jersey – A private not-for-profit program that provides community integrated employment and Day Program Service for persons with disabilities in the Warren, Sussex, Hunterdon and Morris counties.
Division of Disability Services – Administrates programs that allow persons with disabilities to live more independently in the community. Information and resources related to health, education, civil rights and assistance programs.
Ticket to Work – Program that connects persons with permanent disability with free employment services. Assists persons with permanent disability who receive SSDI and SSI navigate their employment options.
Family Resource Associates/ TECH Connection – Assists persons with disabilities reach their full potential through specialized therapies and advances Technology. They also provide support and education to families and care-givers.
Push to Walk – A physical fitness program that provides individualized workouts and resources to persons with spinal cord injuries and other forms of paralysis. Their goal is to optimize the level of fitness for persons with disabilities related to paralysis.
Housing, Transportation, Mobility and Travel
NJ Transit Accessibility Information – Provides information on accessible services available to persons with disabilities and senior citizens such as Access Link, ADA Paratransit.
Model Systems Knowledge Translation Center – A national center that helps facilitate the knowledge translation process to make SCI research accessible to persons with SCI, their caregivers and family. Provides updated research based patient education, resources and videos in an easy to understand format.
Alliance Center for Independence (ACI) – Local based organization focused on increasing independence for persons with disabilities. Multiple peer support groups- young men, women, LGBTQ.
Address: 629 Amboy Ave, Edison, NJ 08837
SCI Support Group – Bacharach Institute for Rehabilitation- 3rd Thursday every month 4-6pm Address: 61 W. Jimmie Leeds Rd, Pomona, NJ 08240
New Jersey Self-Help Group Clearinghouse – A not-for-profit organization funded through the Division of Mental Health Services that assists people with finding and forming self-help and support groups. Phone: 800-367-6274