Combination Rehab/SNF? Confused new grad RN

  1. I am a newly graduated and licensed RN/BSN looking for my first nursing job. I'm a bit confused about the differences between various facilities, departments and specialties. For example, I recently learned that there was such a thing as a Long-Term Acute Care (LTAC) hospital, where patients are still acutely ill but have run out of insurance coverage for their stay in a "regular" or "short-term acute care" hospital. Now I'm looking at a job posting for a facility that specializes in "senior rehabilitation and skilled nursing care." Is this a place where most patients will improve enough to be sent home, or will most of the patients be sent to a long-term skilled nursing facility, or is this facility a rehab center for some patient but really functions as a long-term skilled nursing facility for most patients? Is working at a "rehabilitation and skilled nursing care" facility completely different from working as a rehabilitation nurse at a hospital?

    I'm asking these questions here to avoid sounding foolish to a potential employer. Any insight is appreciated! Also, can anyone suggest or link me to a good article that explains the real-world relationships between acute care, LTAC, rehab, SNF, etc.?
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    About Lemon Bars

    Joined: Apr '14; Posts: 101; Likes: 95
    from CA , US

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  3. by   SummerGarden
    Quote from Lemon Bars
    I am a newly graduated and licensed RN/BSN looking for my first nursing job. I'm a bit confused about the differences between various facilities, departments and specialties. For example, I recently learned that there was such a thing as a Long-Term Acute Care (LTAC) hospital, where patients are still acutely ill but have run out of insurance coverage for their stay in a "regular" or "short-term acute care" hospital. Now I'm looking at a job posting for a facility that specializes in "senior rehabilitation and skilled nursing care." Is this a place where most patients will improve enough to be sent home, or will most of the patients be sent to a long-term skilled nursing facility, or is this facility a rehab center for some patient but really functions as a long-term skilled nursing facility for most patients? Is working at a "rehabilitation and skilled nursing care" facility completely different from working as a rehabilitation nurse at a hospital?

    I'm asking these questions here to avoid sounding foolish to a potential employer. Any insight is appreciated! Also, can anyone suggest or link me to a good article that explains the real-world relationships between acute care, LTAC, rehab, SNF, etc.?

    I can answer one of these questions because I have worked in a few hospitals that have an acute care rehabilitation center. The acute rehabilitation unit in the hospital setting is not Long-Term Care nor is it a LTAC. Patients go to that floor through being screened by a medical team then invited based upon strict criteria. Patients in acute rehabilitation centers in the hospital setting are admitted for short stays and ultimately have a plan to go home with a caregiver or more. Some end up in SNFs for a short stay while others end up in custodial care of some kind (These last two scenarios are suppose to be the exception and not the rule).

    In fact, the nursing care offered in an acute care rehabilitation center is very much similar to the pace and complexity of a medical unit. Plus, the therapy received by patients is intense and frequent throughout the day.
    Last edit by SummerGarden on Aug 8

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