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NeuroRehabilitation. 2003;18(2):103-11.

Using telerehabilitation to promote TBI recovery and transfer of knowledge.

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  • 1INTEGRIS Jim Thorpe Rehabilitation Center, Oklahoma City, OK 73109, USA.


Advances in the design and delivery of trauma care and acute medical management have increased the number of survivors of traumatic brain injury (TBI), producing societal consequences and medical challenges. Although access to health care for rural patients remains a critical challenge, teletherapy may represent a viable means for the delivery of therapeutic services to such patients. A case study is presented in which teletherapy was successfully utilized to improve the functional outcomes, both physical and cognitive, of a patient with a severe TBI. A physical therapist from a metropolitan rehabilitation center employed teletherapy to provide Neuro Developmental Treatment for a patient and to mentor staff in a nursing home located over 100 miles from the metro area. The patient, who participated in 48 physical teletherapy sessions over a 24-week period, demonstrated improvements in physical functioning and neuropsychological status. During the course of therapy, goals were adjusted upward to match the patient's improvements. This case study provides confirmatory evidence that teletherapy represents an effective and efficient means for providing rehabilitation services for patients in rural communities, as well as for facilitating mentoring relationships between seasoned professionals and trainees located in rural settings.

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