Off-campus South Dakota State University users: To download campus access theses, please use the following link to log into our proxy server with your South Dakota State University ID and password.

Non-South Dakota State University users: Please talk to your librarian about requesting this thesis through interlibrary loan.

Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Graduate Nursing

First Advisor

Barbara Heater


therapeutics, rehabilitation centers, length of stay hospital utilization


The purpose of this study was to determine if increased therapy intensity led to a difference in length of stay and functional outcomes of rehabilitation inpatients at a rural midwestern rehabilitation center. Development of a rational basis for rehabilitation hospital payments has become a critical issue due to legislature and policy-maker efforts to control rising health care costs. Payer focus on financial outcomes challenges rehabilitation clinicians to modify treatment techniques to produce optimal clinical outcomes as efficiently as possible. One way to address optimization and efficiency is to use outcome-based programming. Functional status measures appear to provide a basis for predicting resource use. Two potential indicators of resource use are the length of stay (LOS) and the independence of function at discharge from rehabilitation center. Thus, a retrospective study of Functional Independence Measure (FIM) subjects was conducted by comparing LOS efficiency differences of two naturally occurring groups: rehabilitation patients provided with five days of therapy (control group of 57) and those provided with five and a half days of therapy (comparison group of 88). The length of stay efficiency was calculated by dividing the FIM change by length of stay. A t-test indicated a statistically significant increase in functional outcomes with increased therapy intensity for females, persons over 65 and under 75, and persons with total knee arthroscopies (TKAs).

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Rehabilitation centers
Hospital utilization -- Length of stay



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


Copyright © 1999 Nancy Haugen. All rights reserved