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Brooks Rehabilitation Stroke Wellness Program Wins National Hospital Charitable Services Award

Jacksonville, FL, February 26, 2014 --( The Brooks Rehabilitation Stroke Wellness Program was among 10 programs from across the country named a Program of Excellence by the Hospital Charitable Services Awards, a national program sponsored by Jackson Healthcare. The ten programs were commended for exceptional work in setting new standards for giving back to their communities in sustainable ways. Each winning program was presented with a $10,000 investment toward their growth at the National Hospital Charitable Services Conference in Atlanta.

The Brooks Rehabilitation Stroke Wellness Program originated in May 2009 as a call to action from Trevor Paris, MD, Stroke Medical Director of Brooks Rehabilitation, to fill a major gap in community services by extending the continuum of care for persons who had suffered a stroke. Brooks Rehabilitation committed to filling this community need by partnering with the YMCA of Florida’s First Coast to utilize their existing wellness facilities. As the only program of its kind in the area, it provides an ongoing support system for stroke survivors to stay active and maintain a healthy lifestyle, reducing risk factors to prevent a recurrent stroke.

Community stroke survivors complete a one-time physical therapy evaluation with a Brooks’ physical therapist, and receive an individualized exercise program to join the program. The exercise program is completed with supervision during the program hours at the designated YMCA, held typically three days a week. Stroke survivors do not need to have been a Brooks Rehabilitation patient for previous therapy to participate in the program, as it is offered to anyone in the greater Jacksonville area that has suffered a stroke. The program has grown from one location and 25 participants in 2009 to 142 participants in nine locations today.

“These initiatives are not alone in giving back to their communities,” said Charles R. Evans, FACHE, Chairman of the Hospital Charitable Services Awards program. “What makes them truly extraordinary is the impact they achieve through their commitment to serving others, and the outstanding ways they make substantial and caring contributions.”

Program participant, Dr. Richard Bultman was one of many who shared his experience for the award nomination. “To my great dismay, I suffered a sudden stroke in 2011. I was fortunate that Brooks Rehab was in town because after 5 weeks of inpatient therapy and 3 months of outpatient physical therapy, I was walking with assistance and had regained probably 50% of my strength and balance. I was told to try joining the Brooks Stroke Wellness Program at the local YMCA. I can’t stress enough the difference this program has made in my life as well as so many others I’ve met and joined in therapy. I am now back at work and able to drive a car. It has offered me hope for continual improvement,” said Bultman.

To learn more about the Brooks Rehabilitation Stroke Wellness Program, please visit
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Brooks Rehabilitation
Jill Matejcek

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