• Text Size
  • S
  • M
  • L
News Library

Wednesday, February 12, 2014


An integral part of Missouri Baptist Sullivan Hospital is the Skilled Nursing (SWING) bed program -- a family- and patient-focused program that strives to restore patients to their maximum level of functioning following a hospital stay.  The swing bed program fills a void for patients being discharged from the hospital after an acute illness or injury who still need medical care.  It may be physical rehabilitation, IV antibiotics or extensive wound care; in some cases patients who go home and are followed by home health, and are not progressing as planned, may qualify to be re-admitted as a swing bed patient within 30 days of that discharge. 

The swing bed program is available for Medicare patients who typically undergo a relatively uncomplicated and short hospital stay (three overnights).  That patient is no longer medically qualified to remain in the hospital, but is still a step away (hopefully) from home-based care or recovery.  If the individual is already a patient at Missouri Baptist Sullivan Hospital, the patient usually remains in the same room and bed. The only change for the Medicare patient under a swing bed program is the level of care.

Skilled nursing benefits are part of the Medicare A benefit for those patients that need short stay in a rehab facility before going home.  This benefit can be utilized in a rehab facility, or a nursing home; but can also be utilized at Missouri Baptist Sullivan Hospital as a part of our swing bed program.  Some private insurances and managed care insurances also have skilled nursing benefits that can be utilized in our swing bed program; we can review your benefits for you when inquiry to our program is made to see if you may qualify.

The goal of the swing bed program is to return the patient to a permanent living situation as soon as possible. Although the patient under the swing bed program is in the hospital, the emphasis is on moving the patient to home or other living situation.  The medical staff expects the patient to be cooperative, to take instructions, and to participate in consistent rehabilitation and physical therapy activities essential to his or her recovery.  A physical assessment, dietary assessment, and medication review are all parts of the admission process.   Each inquiry into the program is reviewed on an individual basis and if at all possible will be accepted.  Swing bed programs are intended to treat rehabilitation-oriented medical conditions such as orthopedic injuries, strokes, or long hospitalizations that leave a patient too weak and debilitated to return home right away, as opposed to chronic conditions.

Nursing care is provided 24/7 by RNs, LPNs and CNAs; all of whom are CPR certified and most Advanced Life Support Certified. An activity director involves patients in activities and simple crafts, the goal being to get patients back to their pre-hospitalization level of activity.

Pictured is Karen Rohrer, Social Services Manager and Becky Hubbard, Med/Surg-CCU Nurse Manager.

What sets us apart from other local programs is that our rehabilitation team also offers modified barium swallows, lymphedema treatment, VitalStim® (for swallowing difficulties), vestibular rehab (for those who have vertigo), myofascial release (for those with limited range of motion related to pain and soft tissue restrictions), & urinary incontinence therapy for those who qualify.  We can order special pieces of equipment for patients if needed to assist in their treatment and recovery.  Our wound care department staff can also consult with our nursing staff to review a plan of care and assist with dressings and wound care.

Missouri Baptist Sullivan Hospital is committed to improving the health and well-being of the people and communities we serve.  We want our communities to know that we are here for them through the entire spectrum of care.  Our commitment is to a patient centered care experience that takes place close to home.  Inquiries about the program may be made by calling Social Service at: 573-468-1191,  Med/Surg at: 573-468-1150 or Physical Therapy at: 573-468-1340.