Chung-Yuan Wang


2 The Effect of Post-Acute Stroke Inpatient Rehabilitation under per Diem Payment: A Pilot Study

Authors: Chung-Yuan Wang, Kai-Chun Lee, Min-Hung Wang, Yu-Ren Chen, Hung-Sheng Lin, Sen-Shan Fan


Taiwan National Health Insurance (NHI) was launched in 1995. It is an important social welfare policy in Taiwan. Regardless of the diversified social and economic status, universal coverage of NHI was assured. In order to regain better self-care performance, stroke people received in-patient and out-patient rehabilitation. Though NHI limited the rehabilitation frequency to one per day, the cost of rehabilitation still increased rapidly. Through the intensive rehabilitation during the post-stroke rehabilitation golden period, stroke patients might decrease their disability and shorten the rehabilitation period. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the effect of intensive post-acute stroke rehabilitation in hospital under per diem payment. This study was started from 2014/03/01. The stroke patients who were admitted to our hospital or medical center were indicated to the study. The neurologists would check his modified Rankin Scale (mRS). Only patients with their mRS score between 2 and 4 were included to the study. Patients with unclear consciousness, unstable medical condition, unclear stroke onset date and no willing for 3 weeks in-patient intensive rehabilitation were excluded. After the physiatrist’s systemic evaluation, the subjects received intensive rehabilitation programs. The frequency of rehabilitation was thrice per day. Physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech/swallowing therapy were included in the programs for the needs of the stroke patients. Activity daily life performance (Barthel Index) and functional balance ability (Berg Balance Scale) were used to measure the training effect. During 3/1 to 5/31, thirteen subjects (five male and eight female) were included. Seven subjects were aged below 60. Three subjects were aged over 70. Most of the subjects (seven subjects) received intensive post-stroke rehabilitation for three weeks. Three subjects drop out from the programs and went back home respectively after receiving only 7, 10, and 13 days rehabilitation. Among these 13 subjects, nine of them got improvement in activity daily life performance (Barthel Index score). Ten of them got improvement in functional balance ability (Berg Balance Scale). The intensive post-acute stroke rehabilitation did help stroke patients promote their health in our study. Not only their functional performance improved, but also their self-confidence improved. Furthermore, their family also got better health status. Stroke rehabilitation under per diem payment was noted in long-term care institution in developed countries. Over 95% populations in Taiwan were supported under the Taiwan's National Health Insurance system, but there was no national long-term care insurance system. Most of the stroke patients in Taiwan live with his family and continue their rehabilitation programs from out-patient department. This pilot study revealed the effect of intensive post-acute stroke rehabilitation in hospital under per diem payment. The number of the subjects and the study period were limited. Thus, further study will be needed.

Keywords: Rehabilitation, post-acute stroke, per diem payment, NHI

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1 The Importance of Development Evaluation to Preterm Children in Remote Area

Authors: Chung-Yuan Wang, Min Hsu, Bo-Ya Juan, Hsiv Ching Lin, Hsveh Min Lin, Hsiu-Fang Yeh


The success of Taiwan's National Health Insurance (NHI) system attracts widespread praise from the international society. However, the availability of medical care in a emote area is limited. Without the convenient public transportation system and mature social welfare policy, these people are difficult to regain their health and prevent disability. Preterm children have more risk to get development delay. Preterm children in a remote area have the human right to get rehabilitation resources as those in the city area. Therefore, the aim of this study was to show the importance of development screening to preterm children in a remote area and a tract the government to notice the issue. In Pingtung, children who are suspected development delay would be suggested to take a skillful screening evaluation in our hospital. Those preterm children (within 1-year-old) visited our pediatric clinic would also be referred to take the development evaluation. After the physiatrist’s systemic evaluation, the subjects would be scheduled to take the development evaluation. Gross motor, fine motor, speech comprehension/expression and mental study were included. The evaluation was in-charged by a physical therapist, occupational therapy, speech therapist and pediatric psychologist. The tools were Peabody developmental scale, Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development (Bayley-III) and Wechsler Preschool & Primary Scale of Intelligence-Revised (WPPSI-R). In 2013, 459 children received the service in our hospital. Among these children, fifty-seven were noted with preterm baby history (gestation within 37 weeks). Thirty-six of these preterm children, who had never receive development evaluation, were included in this study. Thirty-six subjects (twenty-six male and ten female) were included. Nineteen subjects were found development delay. Six subjects were found suspected development delay. In gross motor, six subjects were development delay and eight were suspected development delay. In fine motor, five subjects were development delay and three were suspected development delay. In speech, sixteen subjects were development delay and six were suspected development delay. In our study, through the provision of development evaluation service, 72.2% preterm baby were found their development delay or suspected delay. They need further early intervention rehabilitation service. We made their parents realize that when development delay was recognized at the early stage, they are often reversible. No only the patients but also their families were improved their health status. The number of the subjects was limited in our study. Further study might be needed. Compared with 770 physical therapist (PT) and 370 occupational therapy (OT) in Taipei, there are only 108 PT and 54 OT in Pingtung. Further, there are much fewer therapists working on the field of pediatric rehabilitation. Living healthy is a human's right, no matter where does he live. For those development delay children in remote area, particularly preterm children, early detection, and early intervention rehabilitation service could play an important role in decreasing their disability and improving their quality of life. Through this study, we suggest the government to add more national resources on the development evaluation to preterm children in a remote area.

Keywords: Development, Rehabilitation, Early Intervention, preterm children

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