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Insights and Trends

Inpatient Rehabilitation Management: Key Insights to Help Hospitals Overcome the Obstacles

Shifting regulations, rising denials and ongoing labor shortages present a multitude of challenges for hospitals when running an inpatient rehabilitation program. However, these are not the only obstacles.

Discover 3 additional challenges hospitals face when providing inpatient rehabilitation and why a joint venture or contract management partnership is a key strategy in delivering high quality care.

1. Financial Hurdles

Financial performance remains a top priority for health leaders.1 However, the lack of qualified clinical labor is causing many hospitals to delay patient discharge - leading to longer length of stay in multiple care settings and a backlog of patients requiring comprehensive care.

These barriers will continue to push the financial envelope for hospitals and result in decreased outcomes and higher care costs across the care continuum – ultimately impacting the viability of the inpatient rehabilitation program and hospital overall.

A partner can help deliver high-quality rehabilitation care in the most effective way possible. Depending on the type of partnership, they can also provide capital support.

2. Network and Referral Development

Before a patient is ever admitted to inpatient rehabilitation, many resources must be deployed. Some of the process includes:

      • Identifying the right patient at the right time within their recovery journey.
      • Ensuring the patient can meet all inpatient rehabilitation qualifications.
      • Educating the patient and family about what to expect during inpatient rehabilitation.
      • Regularly communicating with family members and care team to ensure the patient is reaching their goals and is staying engaged and on track to discharge home.

Having a team of highly trained and experienced rehabilitation clinical liaisons helps reduce denials, lowers readmission rates and per-patient cost, and increases patient satisfaction. The right rehabilitation partner is able to provide these highly trained clinical liaisons with no resources required by the hospital.

3. Quality Assurance and Outcome Monitoring

The standard quality metrics used to measure rehabilitation programs are different from other service lines. Without a partner, an individual hospital often does not have access to national quality data or resources dedicated to understanding and appropriately implementing the latest best practices and research to help ensure high-quality outcomes. 

This often leads to:

      • Reduction in standardized assessment tools
      • Lack of measurable quality goals
      • Reduced care quality
      • Lower overall patient satisfaction

Rehabilitation Partnership as a Best Practice

A recent Mercer study notes 42% of executives are evaluating new partnership opportunities that could be leveraged through a joint venture. Additionally, half of the respondents state they intend to integrate new service lines into their existing operations.2

Support from a specialized partner has been found to help mitigate the challenges listed above without expending unnecessary resources and capital. Because of this, rehabilitation partnership is a leading trend for top health systems across the country.

Contact us to learn how Lifepoint Rehabilitation can help your hospital successfully manage a rehabilitation program while maintaining optimal patient outcomes.

Read our full white paper, “Top Challenges of Running Inpatient Rehabilitation: 6 Things to Know” to learn more about each challenge.


  1. The current state of hospital finances: Fall 2022 update. American Hospital Association. (2022). Retrieved January 20, 2023, from
  2. 1Executive survey: Beat the economic storm by focusing on people. Mercer. (2022). Retrieved March 16, 2023, from

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