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Rehabilitation Center Celebrates 40th Anniversary

The Center Treats Patients with Spinal Cord and Head Injuries

SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF. – The Rehabilitation Center at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center is celebrating its 40th anniversary. Recognized nationally as a center for excellence, the Rehabilitation Center treats patients with severe brain, spinal cord and stroke related injuries. For 40 years this Center has been restoring lives – one patient at a time.

This 76-bed specialty center located within Santa Clara Valley Medical Center pioneered many medical and therapeutic interventions used throughout the country. The Rehabilitation Center continues to be a leader in research that provides unique and important contributions to the field of rehabilitation medicine. Santa Clara Valley Medical Center has been accredited by the Joint Commission and the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities.

In 40 years of providing Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation services, the Rehabilitation Center has treated more than 15,000 patients with spinal cord and traumatic brain injuries, as well as strokes and other neurological conditions resulting in disability. Each one of those patients represents an amazing story of struggle and hope.

Highly specialized medical teams work with patients and their families to provide exceptional outcomes, helping thousands of people return to the highest functioning possible. In addition to the Spinal Cord Injury and Brain Injury Units, the Rehabilitation Trauma Center (RTC) allows for a team of rehabilitation and surgical specialist to treat patients in a specialized medical intensive care setting. What is now seen as a growing trend for to provide immediate care in an intensive care setting was pioneered at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center.

The Stroke and General Rehabilitation Program treats people who have been struck by disabling diseases, impairing their ability to communicate, function, move and manage their daily lives. The goal, as with all Rehabilitation Center programs, is to restore the patient to the highest level of independence possible.

With a ground breaking Recreational Therapy Programs, which introduced the first skiing program for spinal cord injury patients, as well as Physical and Occupational Therapy Programs, the Rehabilitation Center has been leading the way for most of its 40 years. This includes the development of a number of specialized programs including the Women with Disabilities Healthcare Clinic, Peer Support Program, Outreach Emergency Medical Services Program (teaches emergency medical technicians, firefighters, police, ski patrol and E.R. personnel the proper identification and management of trauma victims to prevent or reduce further spinal cord damage), and our Adolescent and Pediatric Rehabilitation Program, which care for children and adolescents that have sustain traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries.

The Rehabilitation Center’s medical staff has the experience and expertise to provide patients the comprehensive care they need so that they can lead fuller, healthier lives.

40th Anniversary Events at the Rehabilitation Center at SCVMC

Media Tours:
Week of September 20th. Tours and/or interviews can be scheduled primarily in the afternoons this week, with limited morning times due to availability. Patient interviews are dependent upon current patients’ willingness to participate at the given time. Contacting former patients is also possible.
If you are interested in touring our facility, interviewing medical staff or patients, please contact
Joy Alexiou at (408) 885-4164.

Model System of Care Conference:
Tuesday, September 21, 2010, at Valley Specialty Center, 7:30 am to 3:00 pm.
If you are interested in attending a portion of this event and interviewing a speaker, please contact
Joy Alexiou at (408) 885-4164 to make arrangements. Speakers:
Dr. Jeffery Englander, Chair, Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, SCVMC
• Model Systems and Lessons Learned regarding brain injury
Dr. Steve McKenna, Chief, Rehabilitation Trauma Center, SCVMC
• Overview of stem cell research related to spinal cord injuries – what patients and families should know.
Dr. Robert Quinn, Director, Rehabilitation Services, Dominican Hospital
• Impact of health care reform on care delivery for rehabilitation patients
Michelle Tipton Burton & Debbie Burdsall, Occupational Therapists
• Information technology and adaptive measures for rehabilitation patients

San Jose Youth Chamber Orchestra Concert:
Sunday, September 26th from 2 pm to 3 pm, Rehabilitation Center, 2nd floor.
If you are interested in attending this concert being performed for Rehabilitation Center patients and their families, please contact Connie Pugh at (408) 582-2120. Junior High School and High School musician will begin this youth concert series this Sunday. This community service by the San Jose Youth Chamber Orchestra will provide enrich our patient environment during their stay in the hospital. Refreshments will follow the performance.

About Our Patients:

  • 69% of our spinal cord injury patients are male;
  • 57% of our brain injury patients are male;
  • 50% of our patients’ spinal cord injuries are motor vehicle related;
  • 63% of our patients’ brain injuries are motor vehicle related.
  • 15% of our spinal cord injury patients were injured in falls, and 12% in sports activities, with diving as the leading cause of sports injuries;
  • Approximately 55% of our spinal cord injury patients have American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) “incomplete” injuries, meaning there is motor and/or sensory sparing below the level of the injury at the time of admission;
  • The average time from the date of injury to admission to SCVMC is 11 days
  • The average length of stay in inpatient rehabilitation averages 27 days.

Media Contact: Gwendolyn Mitchell/Marina Hinestrosa, Office of Public Affairs, (408) 299-5119; Joy Alexiou, Santa Clara Valley Health and Hospital System, (408) 885-4164
Posted: September 20, 2010