top of page

Discharge Criteria Spinal Cord 

Every discharge plan is different and reflects a client’s unique personal and social situation. Recovery from a Spinal Cord Injury takes months and even years; as a result, most people will require ongoing therapy even after discharge. Discharge plans fall roughly into one of three (3) categories:


  • Discharge home with a referral for home-based rehabilitation services.

  • Discharge home with a referral for outpatient therapy or day program services.

  • Discharge to another facility.


The Lighthouse interdisciplinary treatment team will address together their client's discharge planning. The treatment team will provide a comprehensive evaluation and treatment plan with the goal of facilitating the resident’s community reintegration. Discharges are described as such:


1. Successful discharge:

  • The resident/client has met the goals established on admission or during the course of rehabilitation.

  • The client has reached his/her maximum potential benefits for residential rehabilitation or his/her clinical status has improved. Discharge to a different environment is appropriate, as the client’s needs may be safely met by another agency or service in the local community.

  • Completion of discharge planning may include: providing necessary durable medical equipment and prosthetic; establishing a safe discharge destination and support system; preparing the person served and significant others through education; making follow-up appointments and communicating with other providers for medical, therapeutic, or other required services.


2. Discharge with subsequent transfer:

  • The client experienced a significant medical, surgical, or psychological problem requiring acute medical care or another service.

3. Discharge against Medical Advice (AMA):

  • A client or their responsible party wishes to discharge the client from services against the advice of the treatment team and without adequate discharge planning. The client and/or the legal guardian acknowledge that they are leaving the program AMA and are aware of the potential adverse consequences.


4. Unsuccessful discharge:

  • Treatment team has reached a group consensus that the client is unwilling or unable to participate in the rehabilitation program.

  • The Lighthouse Inc. reserves the right to discharge individuals who violate organizational policies and procedures or who decline to participate in the agree-upon plan of care.

  • The client has not demonstrated evidence of improvement in functional abilities or his/her clinical status.

  • The overall personal goal of the client’s program has changed so that residential program is no longer the best use of a person’s resources.


In addition the Executive Director will annually review the discharge criteria for continued appropriateness, will revise the discharge criteria in accordance with the mission and philosophy of the Lighthouse Inc. program.


Individuals who are diagnosed with a spinal cord injury will be assessed for specific discharge needs related to their etiology of injury, level of injury, and completeness of spinal cord dysfunction.

bottom of page