Medical College of Wisconsin
CTSICores SearchResearch InformaticsREDCap

Inpatient Rehabilitation Outcomes After Severe COVID-19 Infections: A Retrospective Cohort Study. Am J Phys Med Rehabil 2021 Dec 01;100(12):1109-1114



Pubmed ID


Pubmed Central ID




Scopus ID

2-s2.0-85122047985 (requires institutional sign-in at Scopus site)   12 Citations


OBJECTIVE: The aim of the study was to describe the characteristics and functional outcomes of patients undergoing acute inpatient rehabilitation after hospitalization for COVID-19.

DESIGN: Using a retrospective chart review, patients were identified who were admitted to inpatient rehabilitation after COVID-19. Patient information collected included sociodemographic characteristics, comorbidities, length of stay, discharge disposition, self-care, mobility, and cognitive functioning. These patients were compared with patients (controls) without COVID-19 with similar impairment codes treated at the same facility before the COVID-19 pandemic.

RESULTS: There were 43 patients who were admitted to the inpatient rehabilitation hospital after COVID-19 infection and 247 controls. Patients who had COVID-19 were significantly more likely to be African American and to have been admitted to a long-term acute care hospital. They also had a longer length of rehabilitation stay. The groups did not differ by age, sex, or insurance. Functionally, although presenting with significantly worse mobility, self-care, and motor scores, the patients previously infected with COVID-19 had similar functional outcomes at time of discharge to the control group.

CONCLUSIONS: Although patients with a history of COVID-19 had worse function at time of admission to acute rehabilitation, inpatient rehabilitation significantly improved their function to comparable levels as patients who did not have COVID-19.

TO CLAIM CME CREDITS: Complete the self-assessment activity and evaluation online at

CME OBJECTIVES: Upon completion of this article, the reader should be able to: (1) Identify how characteristics of patients with COVID-19 admitted to acute rehabilitation differ from those with similar admission codes but without COVID-19; (2) Describe changes in functional measures at admission and discharge of COVID-19 patients compared with patients without COVID-19; and (3) Recognize how inpatient rehabilitation may help reduce inequities in outcomes after severe COVID-19 infection.

LEVEL: Advanced.

ACCREDITATION: The Association of Academic Physiatrists is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.The Association of Academic Physiatrists designates this Journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Author List

Abramoff BA, Dillingham TR, Caldera FE, Ritchie MD, Pezzin LE


Liliana Pezzin PhD, JD Professor in the Institute for Health and Equity department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Case-Control Studies
Disability Evaluation
Length of Stay
Middle Aged
Patient Discharge
Recovery of Function
Retrospective Studies
Time Factors
Treatment Outcome