National Rehab Week

This week, we celebrate the extraordinary work rehabilitation hospitals do to help improve the lives of patients every day. Of course, we cannot celebrate the success and contributions of our hospitals without recognizing the women and men who make them great. Below you will find a heartfelt letter of appreciation for our rehabilitation member Encompass Health Rehabilitation Institute of Tucson. At the heart of this piece is a belief that we hold dear at the Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association (AzHHA)……that finding the right care at the right time is critical to health outcomes. Once you have a chance to read the letter, we’d like to encourage you to let us know what you think. Working together to drive better health for the people of our state is another way we are working toward our long-term goal of one day making Arizona the Healthiest State in the Nation!

Hello to so many dear folks at Encompass Health!

Our son, Jake Bantlin, was able to participate in the Southern Arizona Trauma Conference this past weekend in a special segment called, Grateful Survivors. Yes, he stood on stage, talked very briefly to the crowd of first responders-medical professionals-therapists, and helped us to share his story.

You are a HUGE part of why Jake was able to participate in this event!

THANK YOU for your expertise and knowledge and patience and compassion during the 5 weeks this winter (end of Jan-March 2) while Jake was in inpatient, and then again for following through while we moved Jake home, transitioned to home health and therapy until Jake could return this summer for your outpatient program! Jake nor we could have done this without each of you! You held our hands, taught us so, so many things about stroke recovery, stroke patients, their families and caregiving. Banner UMC saved Jake’s life, but you all have given his life back to him…he is talking lots, remembering how to read, enjoying his phone/technology, has a very dry and funny sense of humor, can sing to absolutely any musical genre, and play an amazing air-guitar! We put his guitar in his hands and helped strum while he remembered how to play all of the chords! He enjoys google maps and finding new restaurants to eat at! He has smiled broadly all summer about being able to stand again, move his right side more, swim in our pool, shoot pool, wheel about our home, attend to much of his personal care.

While Jake is very chatty and engaged in his sense of humor with his family and familiar day-to-day people, he is not often interested in crowded venues. However, he was very jazzed about being invited to this recent conference. He LOVED getting to stay out at Star Pass resort! He carefully chose to wear his Arizona “A” each day of conference, wanted to participate in the Blackhawk rescue demo, the pool party and being on stage, visiting with many that came up to him! The day we came home, Jake google-mapped this resort, reading the roads on the way (we have never been there prior to the weekend), voiced an interest in the conference again, haha! Jake has made many more connections and added language in the days since we talked so much about his accident and care.

We really can never Thank You all enough—you have been so amazing with Jake, and with us! Jake’s original surgery to replace his bone flap was not as successful this spring as we had hoped (resulted in a MRSA infection and removal of the bone flap once more), but he and we are looking forward to another try August 21! He is excited to have this completed, and we will hope to be back in the outpatient therapies once more!

Fondly, Sandy and Art and Jake Bantlin

We’ve all heard the phrase “not all superheroes wear capes.” It’s true: some of the best ones we’ve met wear scrubs, stethoscopes, white coats, gloves and a hospital name badge. National Rehab Week may come and go but the time is always right to pay respect and gratitude to the people who make our hospitals and healthcare industry exceptional. AzHHA would also like to thank all our rehabilitation hospital members for all their hard work and dedication with the short video below. Happy National Rehab Week!




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