What to Look for in an In-Patient Rehabilitation Program

You want to be sure that your child is well cared for, that the program is well run, and that staff are qualified, trained, and supervised. All states have standards of care and requirements for licensing. There also are national organizations that set standards for rehabilitation programs for children and adolescents and for brain injury. Two of these are the Commission for the Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) and the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO). Their approval is not a guarantee of quality, but it is an indication that a program meets professional standards.

For more information, see the individual lists of questions you can ask about the program, staff, costs and coverage, and environment at the rehabilitation facility.

If your child has any special medical, physical, mental, emotional, or behavioral condition that existed prior to the brain injury, then you also may want to ask about a program's experience in that area.

Our son had Down's syndrome and then he had a brain injury. So it was important to us to find a rehabilitation program that understood mental retardation as well as brain injury. Another family might not be as comfortable as we were having their child in a rehabilitation program with retarded children.