June 16, 2008

West Gables Rehabilitation Hospital to Demonstrate New Lokomat(R)

West Gables Rehabilitation Hospital, a 19-year regional provider, has added the Lokomat(R) system to its line of therapy services. The hospital's clinical team will celebrate the addition of the Lokomat with a demonstration/open house on June 26 from 6:00 until 8:00 p.m. in the first floor gymnasium. A program highlighting the equipment's capabilities and introducing the hospital's clinical team will begin at 6:30 p.m.

The Lokomat uses robotic locomotion therapy on patients suffering from strokes, multiple sclerosis, brain injury and other neurological disorders. The equipment uses precise body weight support to help patients optimize correct gait or walking movements. This added support provides therapists with additional "hands" to help patients achieve better accuracy and faster progress in their therapy. Developed by Swiss-based medical technology company Hocoma in 2000, the Lokomat is one of 45 systems within the U.S.

"West Gables is the only rehabilitation hospital in the Miami area offering the Lokomat services to patients," said Dr. Ismael Roque, West Gables Rehabilitation Chief Executive Officer. "Many of our patients suffer from stroke, multiple sclerosis and other neurological disorders. When looking at the services we provide and the patients the Lokomat treats, we know that this new technology is a good fit for us."

West Gables Rehabilitation Hospital, located at 2525 SW 75th Avenue, is a 60-bed, physical rehabilitation hospital serving the greater Miami area. West Gables treats patients suffering from complex physical and cognitive problems, including those with traumatic brain injury, stroke, amputation, spinal cord injury and neurological disorders, such as multiple sclerosis or Parkinson's disease. Dr. Roque describes the hospital as a blend of intensive inpatient rehabilitation and personalized care in a home-like atmosphere. West Gables also provides outpatient rehabilitation services.

"The Lokomat is another example of our team going the extra mile in ensuring patients have access to specialized services and the latest techniques and technology to help them achieve their goals for recovery," said Dr. Jose Vargas, West Gables Rehabilitation Medical Director. "The Lokomat is truly a cutting-edge piece of equipment."

A West Gables patient, Mr. Rafael Carpio, has been using the Lokomat to improve gait problems he developed after a December 2007 stroke. "Mr. Carpio also exhibits spasticity in his lower extremities. The Lokomat allowed him to heel strike or to walk with proper pattern almost instantly," said West Gables Physical Therapist Fernando Rodriguez. "It is so exciting to see common challenges, like spacisity, no longer be an inhibitor to a patient's rehabilitation."

The Lokomat has provided the West Gables clinical team with added benefits. "The Lokomat has increased our ability to treat patients more efficiently," said Rodriquez. "The Lokomat provides a patient with added upper body support requiring only one therapist per patient."

Nearly 30% of patients treated at West Gables Rehabilitation Hospital receive treatments for spinal cord injuries, brain injuries and neurological disorders.

Dr. Roque and the entire West Gables clinical team invite area physicians, case managers and members of the community to attend the open house to witness how the hospital's more than 200 professionals work toward its mission of helping people regain their lives. The program is set to begin at 6:30 pm.

Members of the West Gables Rehabilitation medical staff and the hospital's clinical teams will be present for the event to conduct demonstrations and to answer questions about the Lokomat. Staff-guided hospital tours will be available.

More information on the hospital's open house can be obtained by calling (305) 260-1841. For more information on RehabCare, visit http://www.rehabcare.com.

(Photos and fact sheet available upon request)