Outcome Trends Post Discharge from Inpatient Rehabilitation to the Community


  • Angela Stone Schmidt PhD MNSc RN

    Corresponding author
    1. College of Nursing & Health Professions, Arkansas State University, Jonesboro, Arkansas, USA
    • Correspondence

      Angela Stone Schmidt, Director of Graduate Programs, School of Nursing & Associate Dean, College of Nursing & Health Professions, Arkansas State University, Jonesboro, AR.

      E-mail: aschmidt@astate.edu

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This study provides evidence of the outcome trends following inpatient rehabilitation services.


The methodology of this study design uses descriptive statistical analysis, paired t-tests, and analysis of variance (ANOVA) to examine multiple variables. This quantitative, non-experimental study describes the research population and the data collection instrument, the inpatient rehabilitation facility patient assessment instrument (IRF PAI), including the Functional Independence Measure (FIM).


Identified trends provide evidence that functional gains of the disabled population were maintained post discharge from an inpatient rehabilitation facility. Demographics, medical information, and discharge information were studied to describe relationships between the discharge information (discharge living setting, discharge with home health services, discharge to the person living with) and maintained functional performance.


This evidence provides essential information for healthcare providers, including nurses, policy makers, and governments regarding functional gains following inpatient rehabilitation, and community discharge trends of people receiving inpatient rehabilitation services.

Clinical Relevance

The evidence in this study supports that inpatient rehabilitation services should be provided to all persons with disabilities to increase functioning to the greatest level of independence possible. Further evidence-based knowledge regarding the proposed 75% Rule of the Prospective Payment System (PPS) is needed and required, affecting the access and delivery of rehabilitation services. All patients have a right to quality, cost-effective care without restrictions to certain populations to encourage return to community dwelling.