Content » Vol 42, Issue 5

Special report

European union of medical specialists (UEMS) section of Physical & Rehabilitation Medicine: A Position Paper on Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine in Acute Settings

Anthony B. Ward, Christoph Gutenbrunner, H Damjan, Alessandro Giustini, Alain Delarque
DOI: 10.2340/16501977-0565


Physical and rehabilitation medicine (PRM) specialists have an important role in the clinical care of patients during the acute phase of a disabling health condition. This phase is defined as once definitive care or resuscitation has taken place and a patient’s need to stay in hospital as an inpatient is primarily for PRM services for rehabilitation. This paper describes 4 options for the delivery of services for people, who continue to require to be inpatients and who will benefit from PRM interventions. These are described, along with their clear benefits during the acute phase of a health condition. The first 2 models are the most effective in making best use of the acute facilities and PRM services. The benefits of dedicated PRM beds appear to outweigh those of the other options and may be cheaper, although no cost-effectiveness studies comparing the first 2 options have yet been undertaken. Prospective trials are required to show this benefit, and a number of examples need to be set up to pilot this in order to provide realistic cost-effectiveness data.

Lay Abstract


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