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Rehabilitation Team

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Find out what you need to know about care and treatment for your rehabilitation at Cottage Rehabilitation Hospital. Meet our expert team, make an appointment or schedule a tour by calling (805) 569-8999, ext. 82338.

The rehabilitation team employs a transdisciplinary approach to the rehabilitation process that addresses the medical, physical, cognitive, neuropsychological, and family needs of the patient. Working together, case managers, neuropsychologists, nurses, physicians, and therapists develop individualized courses of treatment to help each patient set and reach practical, patient-focused goals.

Case Management

Case management coordinates the team's care plan, and communicates progress information to the patient and family and to referring physicians and insurers. Case managers assist patient and family in understanding the disability and any new social and economic problems that arise because of it. They assist in discharge planning, family training, and community reintegration guidance for patients and their families.

Clinical Nutritionists 

The Registered Dietitians (RD) are food and nutrition experts and leaders in the field of dietetics. Each RD is credentialed through the Commission on Dietetic Registration and holds at minimum a Bachelor’s degree. Several RDs also have Master’s degrees and hold specialty certifications. Our clinical RDs are part of the medical team administering medical nutrition therapy in the hospital and outpatient clinic setting. Our culinary RD works in food services assuring optimal nutritional quality of the room service-style menus. At CRH, our nutritionist specializes in rehabilitation medicine, stroke and brain injury, and works closely with speech and occupational therapists to ensure patients receive the appropriate dietary texture and plate/utensil adaptations needed for safety.

Occupational Therapy 

The occupational therapist (OT) helps each patient reach maximum independence in activities of daily living, such as feeding, dressing, grooming, bathing, toileting, kitchen tasks, home living skills, and driving.

OTs also address upper extremity coordination and strengthening, cognitive/perceptual retraining, including attention, memory, problem solving, organization and visual perception activities. The OT advises on adaptive equipment and devices needed in reaching rehabilitation goals.

Physical Therapy 

The primary objective of physical therapy is to promote optimum movement and function. The physical therapist (PT) evaluates movement and the ability to perform functional skills such as moving around a bed, balance in sitting and standing, and walking and / or using a wheelchair.

A treatment program is developed to focus on the patient's specific mobility goals and needs. This program may include use of physical agent modalities for pain reduction, manual therapy and exercise to improve strength, quality of movement, balance, posture and coordination.


Day-to-day medical care is closely coordinated by physiatrists, physician specialists in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, who meet regularly with the rehabilitation team to discuss the patient's progress and direct his or her program. Physicians specializing in internal medicine attend to the patient's general medical needs, optimizing his or her potential for recovery of function. When appropriate, consultations in other medical specialties are obtained. The CRH medical director oversees admission and care of all patients.

Psychology Services

CRH's psychology team helps with challenges that catastrophic illnesses and injuries pose for patients and families. As an integral part of the rehabilitation team, the psychology staff helps the patient and family regain the sense of mastery that plays a central role in a successful rehabilitation outcome. They may also provide counseling psychology to help patients cope with various lifestyle changes resulting from disabilities. The psychology team may employ formal or informal neuropsychological testing to assist patients and the other rehabilitation team members better understand some of the changes in thinking and coping skills that may have occurred.

Recreational Therapy 

Individualized leisure activities and counseling are provided by the recreation therapist to incorporate and reinforce skills learned from other therapies. Patients are helped to adapt or modify previous leisure activities and find new ones to enjoy. Supervised trips away from the hospital in a specially equipped van provide opportunities to practice improved skills in a real-life situation. Therapeutic recreation supports return to home and community in an independent and healthy lifestyle.

Rehabilitation Nursing 

Rehabilitation nurses provide 24-hour nursing care, closely monitoring medical and functional status, and teaching patients how to prevent or cope with problems associated with their condition. Many of CRH’s nurses are Certified Rehabilitation Registered Nurses (CRRN). They assist patients in applying skills learned in all areas of the rehabilitation program and focus on restoring and maintaining function, preventing complications, and avoiding further functional loss.

Speech Language Pathology 

When communication or swallowing problems are present, a speech language pathologist works with the patient to improve speech, comprehension, memory, reading, and writing skills, with special emphasis on social communication. Swallowing problems are carefully assessed and treated.