BLOG: How to Choose an LTACH


Choosing an LTACH - LifeCare Health Partners

Decisions, Decisions: Which LTACH is for me?

Sometimes in life, you must prepare for treatment that involves finding a Long Term Acute Care Hospital, or LTACH, to handle your healthcare needs. But do you know what you are looking for? Especially if you aren’t specifically referred to a particular facility by a physician. We can help.

Making healthcare decisions for yourself or a loved one can be an intimidating process. Because long term acute care is such a specialized level of care, many people are unfamiliar with it until a personal need arises.

Here are a few factors to consider in choosing the LTACH that is right for you and your family.

Quality of Care – The quality of care provided at a long term acute care hospital should be your number one consideration.  Don’t hesitate to ask questions of an LTACH representative to better understand the facility’s care. 
Things like:

  • What is the nurse-to-patient ratio?
  • Are your nurses certified in Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS)?
  • How many days a week do you offer respiratory therapy? Physical therapy?
  • What percentage of your patients are successfully weaned off a ventilator?
  • What percentage of your patients are discharged home, and how does that compare to national averages?

Administrators should be happy to share this kind of information with you, and provide you with a complete tour of the facility. They want you to have a comfort level with their hospital.

Choosing an LTACH - LifeCare Health Partners

While you are visiting, take a tour of the facility to see what it has to offer. During your tour, make it a point to note the following:

  • Is it a comfortable place?
  • Is it clean in and around the cafeteria, therapy areas, nursing station, and patient rooms/bathrooms?
  • Does it promote family education and involvement?
  • Does the staff greet you and make you feel welcome?

Recommendations – A recommendation from your physician is a very strong indicator of a long term acute care hospital’s role in the community.  Because not all physicians routinely make referrals to LTACHs, you may need to ask around to find someone who is familiar with the LTACHs in your area.  If you have experienced a stay in an acute care hospital, you can also consult with the discharge planners or case managers involved in your care.

Word of Mouth – People are willing to praise something when they have had a good experience. Word of mouth recommendations can prove very useful in selecting the long term acute care hospital that is right for you.  Friends, relatives, neighbors and co-workers who can share their experiences – both positive and/or negative – can provide a unique and personal perspective about an LTACH. Assess their advice and choose the right facility for you.

Location, Location, Location – A convenient location is another important component to consider. Family members often want to be physically close to loved ones who are in the hospital.  The clinical teams at our hospitals encourage family involvement in the care planning process and welcome family and visitors.

Choosing an LTACH - LifeCare Health Partners

Ultimately the decision is yours to make. We just want you to have all the resources available while making these choices. That way, when you do decide on a long term acute care hospital for yourself or a family member, you have the confidence to know you have chosen wisely.

LifeCare Health Partners is proud of each member of our family of hospitals nationwide. We strive to uphold our mission to Accelerate Healing – Restore Health – Improve Life. One of our facilities may be exactly the LTACH you are looking for. Visit our website for more information. Also learn about our Patient Referral App for quick and easy referrals.


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