Excellence in Action: Restoring Hope: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Overcoming COVID-19.

A patient admitted to our facility in St. Martinville, LA, following a 16-day hospitalization due to complications related to COVID-19.  Prior to his illness, the patient had been functioning independently in his home environment.  At the hospital, he was diagnosed with Acute Renal Failure and Failure to Thrive. 

When he was admitted to our facility, the patient had lost the ability to walk.  In fact, he was not able to stand or even sit up without assistance.  He was almost completely dependent with ADLs, and had a PEG tube placed for hydration and nutrition, as he had no appetite.  The decline in hydration and nutrition resulted in a general health decline, including generalized weakness, low endurance, low activity tolerance, and significant weight loss. The patient was severely deconditioned, becoming very short of breath with any level of exertion, requiring a BiPap machine at night to maintain breath support when sleeping.  He had also developed Tardive Dyskinesia, involuntary muscle movements of the eyes, lips, jaw, and tongue, as a side effect of some of the medications given to him at the hospital.

Our Therapy team, including Brenda, PT, Shanette, PTA, and Andrew, PTA, Joshua, COTA and Victoria, SLP, implemented intervention strategies from TMC’s COVID-19 Recovery Program.  They used the COVID Recovery printouts provided by TMC, to create realistic & attainable goals for the patient, and used an interdisciplinary approach to improve the patient’s overall health, independent function, and quality of life.  Daily interventions included, but were not limited to:  interventions focused on improving strength, endurance, and breath support. The therapy team motivated the patient through each intervention, coaching and counseling him on the importance of coming off PEG & eating solid foods. They also focused on completing ADLs daily and worked hard to deliver aggressive therapy including bed mobility, transfers, and ambulation through functional interventions.

When the patient discharged from our facility 5-6 weeks later, he no longer needed supplemental oxygen, and was able to walk independently using a Rolling Walker and complete ADLs independently.  He had regained the ability to tolerate a regular diet, and had gained back 6 of the pounds he’d lost during his illness.  More importantly, he was returning home independent, with a heart full of hope, and plans to resume his job as an Uber driver in nearby Lafayette. 

In St. Martinville, Louisiana, we realize that COVID recovery is truly a community effort, and we are truly ALL IN this together! 

We are so proud of our team for making a positive difference in the life of this gentleman, and in the lives of everyone we serve!