Casa Colina

Casa Colina

A pioneer in rehabilitative care

By Katy Allgeyer
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Casa Colina Centers for Rehabilitation are recognized throughout the nation as the first to introduce many of the modalities that are implemented in rehabilitative care today. With a rich history that began with its founding in a small farmhouse in Chino, Calif., to facilities that include the new replacement hospital on the Pomona campus, Casa Colina has had a significant impact in the treatment of acute rehabilitation patients.

Frances Eleanor “Mother” Smith opened Casa Colina — “House on the Little Hill” — caring for young children with polio. She developed breakthrough therapies, helping them regain their mobility and self-esteem, and soon caught the recognition of President Franklin D. Roosevelt as well as other medical professionals who began to follow and build on her treatment successes. With the arrival of the Salk vaccine to cure polio, it expanded its mission to care for people of all ages with a variety of injuries and disabilities.

Other Casa Colina milestones: the first facility to assemble an interdisciplinary treatment team to collaborate with physicians, the first hospital to manage chronic pain, and the first rehab center to offer a complete continuum of care for those with brain injuries and other neurological trauma. Today, it continues to share its research findings with other medical institutions and remains at the forefront of brain trauma and spinal cord injuries rehabilitation.

How did Casa Colina evolve from an ad hoc farmhouse situation to a collection of rehab centers, long-term residential centers, and physician specialty outpatient centers? This nonprofit, community-governed organization has a state-of-the-art hospital with leading-edge treatments that attracts top medical professionals. There is one licensed nurse to every five patients.

“Rehab nursing is very rewarding due to the ability to be part of an interdisciplinary team working on common goals for the patient,” Stephanie Bradhurst, director of marketing for Casa Colina told us. “Seeing the impact you make on a patient’s life is special.”

Katy Allgeyer is an artist and freelance writer. She is a columnist for Working World and Working Nurse magazines.

This article is from workingnurse.com.

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