Children's Hospital Colorado

Meet Our Team: Neurotrauma Rehabilitation Specialists

At Children’s Hospital Colorado, we treat the big things, the small things and everything in between.

If your child has sustained an injury to the brain or spinal cord and is seen in the Neurotrauma Program, the following rehabilitation specialists will be part of your child’s care team:

  • Pediatric rehabilitation physicians (known as physiatrists) will be coordinating and managing all of your child’s medical needs in the inpatient Neurotrauma Rehabilitation Unit. You will be seen by the rehabilitation doctor every day.
  • Nurses: All of our registered nurses are cross-trained to include neurotrauma rehabilitation, neurosurgery and orthopedics. All registered nurses are certified in BLS (basic life support) and PALS (pediatric advanced life support)or ENPC ( emergency pediatric nursing course)
  • registered dietitian will evaluate your child’s nutritional status and suggest a special diet that meets his or her nutritional needs while in the hospital.
  • A physical therapist (PT) will work with your child to help improve his or her independence and mobility. The PT will help with transfers, strengthening, range of motion, and ordering of equipment such as crutches, wheelchairs, and bath equipment if needed.
  • An occupational therapist (OT) will work with your child to help increase independence for "activities of daily living." These activities include eating, dressing and bathing. The OT is also the specialist to help with feeding.
  • A speech–language pathologist will help with language and communication and will work with your child on improving his or her speech and mouth movements.
  • A therapeutic recreation/child life specialist is available on a referral basis to assist with ideas for involving your child in play and recreational activities as part of rehabilitation.
  • A clinical social worker is available to help provide emotional support and will help your family coordinate resources for discharge. The social worker will arrange to have family meetings with your child’s treatment team. The social worker and a psychologist are also available to help with your family’s concerns about siblings’ reactions to the hospital experience if needed.
  • Because an injury or hospitalization can be stressful, a pediatric psychologist is available to help your child emotionally adjust to his or her current situation and cope most effectively with the stress and changes caused by the injuries or illness. Our psychologists are all doctoral degreed and specially trained in child and adolescent treatment and neuropsychological assessment. They consult with parents and school personnel to assist with each child’s optimal return to school.
  • When necessary, respiratory therapists and a pulmonary rehab specialist will be called if your child has any difficulty breathing as a result of his or her illness or injury.
  • A learning specialist is a teacher trained in assisting children with special needs. He or she will be able to continue your child’s schoolwork at the appropriate level and help with planning for going back to school in the future.
  • A case manager is assigned to coordinate benefits with families’ insurance companies and to facilitate discharge plans for the care your child may need at home.