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Functional Assessment

One of the most important first steps in planning a rehabilitation program is conducting a functional assessment.

Mr Tanner was independent in all ADL’s prior to his stroke. This is important information as premorbid functional status has an impact on the expected outcome of the rehabilitation program.

One day after Mr Tanner’s stroke and prior to the family and team meeting where rehabilitation goals will be discussed, registered nurse Wendy Carmichael visits Mr Tanner on the ward, to determine his level of functional independence.

Part of this assessment is to determine what level of rehabilitative care in suitable for Mr Tanner, inpatient or outpatient. It also informs planning and goal setting for rehabilitation and provides a baseline by which to compare Mr Tanner’s improvements in the weeks ahead.

Wendy is using the Barthel Index, but another scale that is commonly used in Australia is called the Functional Independence Measure.

Click here to see Mr Tanner’s initial Barthel Index Score