VCU Rehabilitation Program in Top 20 in Prestigious U.S. News Rankings

The Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center’s rehabilitation program has been ranked 20th in the country by U.S. News Media Group’s 2009-10 publication of America’s Best Hospitals. This is the second year in a row that the program has received this ranking and the third time overall.

The Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation offers comprehensive rehabilitation for the residual effects of traumatic brain injury, stroke, musculoskeletal or spinal cord injury, neurological illness, hip fractures, joint replacement, burns, arthritis, cardiac disease and pulmonary disease.

“Our department has a long and distinguished history of providing state-of-the-art patient care, research and academics,” said David X. Cifu, M.D., professor and chair of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. “The highly dedicated team of health care professionals within the department assists patients through each phase of rehabilitation and recovery, offering an array of specialties and treatments. We are honored to have our program cited as one of the best in the country.”

The VCU Rehabilitation and Research Center provides care through its spinal cord injury, brain injury and general rehabilitation programs.

VCU has the only rehabilitation facility in the Richmond area with a dedicated, specialized team working with spinal cord injury patients. Along with comprehensive care to improve hope, function and quality of life for patients, the Spinal Cord Injury Program also pursues medical and therapeutic advancements in care and outcomes through its research program.

The Brain Injury Program is recognized as one of only 16 federally designated Model System of Care facilities for persons with brain injuries. The program is a self-contained 14-bed unit that treats both adults and adolescent patients with traumatic as well as non-traumatic brain injuries.

The General Rehabilitation Program is the oldest continuous inpatient rehab program in the Commonwealth of Virginia, opening its doors in 1952. The program provides comprehensive therapy and care for patients with a wide range of diagnoses as well as education that focuses on home safety and overcoming barriers with going home.

“The rehabilitation program exemplifies the high quality of specialized care that our patients receive at the VCU Medical Center,” said Sheldon Retchin, M.D., VCU Health System CEO. “The ranking by U.S. News for our rehabilitation team reaffirms our vision to be the preeminent academic health center in the nation.”

The VCU Medical Center was also noted for excellence by U.S. News in heart and heart surgery, ranked 44th in the country; kidney disease, ranked 44th; and orthopaedics, ranked 45th.

Now in its 20th year, the multi-platform 2009-10 America’s Best Hospital guide is the most extensive hospital ranking to-date. It includes rankings of 174 medical centers nationwide in 16 specialties.

About the Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center

The Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center is one of the nation’s leading academic medical centers and stands alone as the most comprehensive academic medical center in Central Virginia. The medical center includes the 865-bed MCV Hospitals and outpatient clinics, MCV Physicians -- a 600-physician-faculty group practice, and the health sciences schools of Virginia Commonwealth University. The VCU Medical Center, through its VCU Health System, offers state-of-the-art care in more than 200 specialty areas, many of national and international note, including organ transplantation, head and spinal cord trauma, burn healing and cancer treatment. The VCU Medical Center is the site for the region’s only Level 1 Trauma Center. As a leader in healthcare research, the VCU Medical Center offers patients the opportunity to choose to participate in programs that advance evolving treatment, such as those sponsored by the National Cancer Institute through VCU’s Massey Cancer Center, Virginia’s first NCI-designated cancer center. The VCU Medical Center’s academic mission is supported by VCU’s health sciences schools of medicine, allied health, dentistry, pharmacy and nursing.