Rehab in Gym

Inpatient Rehabilitation Unit

To Refer a Patient, Call (757) 668-9999

CHKD's inpatient rehabilitation program helps children, teens and young adults reach their full potential.

At CHKD we understand that young people have very special needs as patients. This is especially true of those who need rehabilitation to regain lost skills or develop new ones after accidents, illnesses or surgeries.

Children and teens in rehabilitation require more than equipment sized to meet their smaller bodies. They need therapists who understand how to motivate young people. They need doctors who understand not only the developing body, but also the developing mind and how one affects the other. They need nurses who know how children communicate. Above all, they need to be in a comforting, non-threatening environment with other patients they can relate to.

Your child will find all of that and more at Children's Hospital of The King's Daughters.

What conditions do you treat?

CHKD's inpatient rehabilitation unit provides diagnosis and treatment for young people from birth to age 21 with a wide variety of conditions. Conditions include, but are not limited to the following:

Who will care for my child?

Each patient who comes to the CHKD Rehabilitation Unit has a unique combination of skills and challenges, so your child will see many different specialists while you're here. Everyone here is specially trained to care for young people. Here are some of the people who may help take care of your child:

  • Physicians: Medical doctors specializing in pediatric physical medicine will be in charge of your child's care in the Rehab Unit. Your child may also see other doctors, such as pediatric hospitalists and resident physicians. CHKD patients also have access to pediatricians in more than 30 specialties, such as neurology, pulmonary medicine, medical genetics and gastroenterology, should the need arise.
  • Rehabilitation nurses: Registered nurses (RN) who specialize in the care of young rehabilitation patients will spend the most time with your child and become a first "point of contact" for you with information about your child.
  • Physical therapists: These therapists work with large muscle groups on skills such as sitting, standing and walking. Physical therapists also help patients learn to use wheelchairs, walkers or other special equipment. For detailed information on physical therapy services at CHKD, click here. 
  • Occupational therapists: These therapists work small muscle groups on controlling parts of the body such as the hands and the mouth. Occupational therapists work on skills such as dressing and eating. For detailed information on occupational therapy services at CHKD, click here.
  • Speech therapists: These therapists will help patients regain or develop speech and language skills. They may also work with PT or OT with eating and drinking skills. For detailed information on speech therapy services at CHKD, click here.
  • School teachers: CHKD's hospital school program is helping children 2-21 recover their thinking and reasoning skills and/or keep up with their classes while they're in the hospital.
  • Medical social workers: Medical social workers are available to help you adjust to your child's diagnosis or hospitalization and to help you connect with resources in the community that can assist you. Social workers can also help you make a smooth transition from hospital to home when it's time for your child to be discharged.
  • Rehabilitation coordinators: These nurses work with insurance companies for admission to the unit and will help at the end of your child's stay by coordinating the services and treatments that your child will need to continue at home.
  • Nutritional therapists: Registered dietitians will address any special dietary or nutritional needs your child may have.
  • Child life specialists: Play and recreation are vital to children's health, growth and development, even while they're in the hospital. Child life specialists help patients make a positive adjustment to hospitalization through age-appropriate activities.

How do you determine what will help my child?

Evaluating your child's current condition is the first step of rehabilitation. Your input is vital to this process, because you can tell us about your child's previous abilities, skills and experiences. Our rehabilitation team will also assess how well your child is doing in the following areas:

  • Activities of daily living (dressing, eating, grooming)
  • Behavior and psychological functioning
  • Bowel and bladder function
  • Mobility (including wheelchair mobility)
  • Cognitive and intellectual functioning
  • Educational functioning
  • Speech and language skills

Once we have a thorough understanding of your child’s strengths and challenges, we’ll meet with you and your child to establish goals for treatment. Your ideas about your child’s goals and plan of care are also very important to us.

What is a typical day like?

Your child will have a full daily schedule in CHKD’s Rehabilitation Unit. A typical day might look something like this: 

  • 7 a.m. Breakfast
  • 8 a.m Physical Therapy
  • 9 a.m. Hospital School
  • 10 a.m. Speech Therapy
  • 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. Lunch and Rest
  • 1 p.m. Occupational Therapy
  • 2-3 p.m. Rest
  • 3 p.m. Child Life Therapy 

A copy of this schedule will be posted on your child's door, so you'll know what to expect each day at the hospital. As you can see from the schedule, rehabilitation is hard work. It will be very important for your child to rest during the day between activities. For this reason, the best times for guests (other than parents) to visit is during the evening hours.

Can I stay with my child?

Parents are welcome at all times. You may visit and participate in your children's scheduled therapies any time.  Read our visitor information page for more information.

How can I help my child feel comfortable away from home?

Hospitalizations for rehabilitation often last several weeks, so we encourage you to bring photographs, favorite blankets and other mementos that will help make your child's hospital room feel more like home. Each room has a TV in it and we offer a wide range of videos, but we do insist that TVs be turned off at bedtime so patients can rest. Meals and snacks are provided for the patient, and we also have a refrigerator where you can store favorite foods you bring from home-although this has to be coordinated with your child's nurses. We even have laundry facilities available on the unit.

How can I get more information?

For more information on CHKD's inpatient rehabilitation unit, please call (757) 668-8765. Tours of the unit are available for families, referring physicians and discharge planners.

Rehab Unit Location
To Refer a Patient, Call (757) 668-9999

Megan's Road to Recovery

Walking and talking again were Megan Berotti's goals after being hit by a car. Not only did she accomplish that, she also made all A's upon returning to school in the same year, thanks to rehabilitation at CHKD.

+Read More

Inpatient Rehab at CHKD