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1. Core Knowledge

You can think of rehabilitation in terms of minimizing disability and handicap for a given level of impairment. ('Rehabilitation' derives from the Latin habilitas, which means ability.) You can also think in terms of tertiary prevention.

Definitions include:

Rehabilitation is a long-term process requiring complete engagement of the patient. To be successful, patient and family must participate actively in decision-making, while doctor, nurse, physiotherapist, nutritionist and pharmacist facilitate this process. The rehabilitation plan must balance patient-centred goals with shared expectations of all parties involved. Education for patient and family creates awareness, positive attitudes and can help develop more effective alternatives for activities that are not working. Lastly, team communication is vital in the efficacy and success of the program as an open dialogue fosters problem solving opportunities.

Rehabilitation covers much more than mobility rehabilitation; an example is the rehabilitation of sexual offenders.

Updated February 17, 2015