At the Rehab Hotel

At the Rehab Hotel

Jewish Home in River Vale provides a safe haven to recover

Carol Silver Elliott hands the microphone to a resident at a celebration at the Jewish Home Assisted Living in River Vale. (Jewish Home Family)
Carol Silver Elliott hands the microphone to a resident at a celebration at the Jewish Home Assisted Living in River Vale. (Jewish Home Family)

We are living in a time of medical miracles.

Billions of dollars are being spent on research and pharmaceuticals. Doctors are super-specializing in highly specific fields, trying to find cures and ways to make people who are sick live longer and in the best way possible.

And yet, with all the advancements, people still have to have procedures done, and then to recover from them. There still is work being done to help make recovering from a hip or knee replacement or an extended hospital stay as relaxing and pain-free as possible.

Where are these advances offered?

You can find them at places like the rehab hotel within the Jewish Home Assisted Living in River Vale.

What is the rehab hotel? It first opened in early 2017. It is a converted studio apartment within the assisted living facility in River Vale; if there is need for more space, it can become available. And it should arise — because the concept is genius.

According to Carol Silver Elliott, the president and CEO of the Jewish Home Family, of which the Jewish Home Assisted Living is part, “The rehab hotel is paid for privately by the individual at a daily rate. The individual receives physical, occupational and speech therapy, depending on their individual needs, on a daily basis, often twice a day. The costs for therapy are covered by Medicare or insurance.”

People can stay for as long or as short a time as they have to. It all depends on what they feel comfortable with. And the amenities make it very appealing. They get “twenty-four hour nursing care, aide assistance, medication administration, three meals a day, activity programs, transportation — all the services that are available to any resident of Jewish Home Assisted Living,” Ms. Elliott said.

Still, you might wonder why people would want to check themselves into the rehab hotel straight from a hospital. Doesn’t the hospital take care of them? It’s not that simple, Ms. Elliott said. “If someone has surgery or an illness or injury, goes to the hospital and then to rehab, they may feel, in today’s world, that their rehab stay is not long enough. People are being discharged sooner and sooner, and some feel they are not ready to go home.”

Medicare covers only a certain number of days. Beyond that, it becomes patients’ responsibility. They aren’t necessarily ready to go home; they are not necessarily prepared to coordinate their own service plans. “They can come to the rehab hotel, get a high level of therapy, all the services they need, medical supervision, and the security of knowing they are in a safe place,” Ms. Elliott said. “If someone has a hospitalization and is not sent to rehab, rather referred for outpatient treatment, and they feel as if that won’t be enough, or they are not ready to go home, they can opt for the rehab hotel.

“Or someone could be living in the community and feel that they need help to regain function, get back on their feet, build strength and they, too, can be potential users of the rehab hotel.”

They can get all those services at the rehab hotel, with none of the aggravation of trying to find family members or friends to do it, or trying to do it themselves.

The rehab hotel is such a great idea that physicians, hospitals, and rehab centers have begun to tell their clients about it. They see the need for a continuance of care — and this, many feel, is the perfect solution.

Margi Hirshberg of Cresskill is an 82-year-old ball of energy. She had outpatient surgery, a partial knee replacement, done at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York in April. That evening, she checked herself into the rehab hotel. “I knew that because my husband was ill at the time, that I wouldn’t have anyone to take care of me, so this seemed like the perfect option,” Ms. Hirshberg said. She started physical therapy as soon as the doctors said she could start — and she has never looked back. “Doing the best I could to get as strong as I could was motivated by my desire to get back to taking care of my husband.” Sadly, her husband, Irwin, died in May. Ms. Hirshberg now is back on the tennis court and continuing her volunteer work in the community.

“I knew about the rehab hotel because I used to volunteer at the Jewish Home,” Ms. Hirshberg said. “It was a beautiful room, and my grandson the doctor couldn’t believe that it wasn’t a real hotel!” She couldn’t thank the staff enough for how they took care of her. “I wore a button in case I needed any help, but the staff always knew where I was supposed to be,” she said. “So if I showed up late for lunch, someone would come and check on me. I felt very safe and well taken care of.”

And you cannot ask for more than that!

For more information and availability, call (201) 666-2370

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