United States Department of Veterans Affairs

Glossary (PDF-33KB)
Philosophy of Care



Polytrauma care is for veterans and returning service members with injuries to more than one physical region or organ system including traumatic brain injury (TBI). The Polytrauma System of Care provides comprehensive, high quality and interdisciplinary care. A multi specialty team of physicians and rehabilitation specialists develop and administer an individualized rehabilitation plan to promote patient recovery.

Polytrauma/Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Rehabilitation Centers (PRC). Four regional PRCs (Richmond, VA; Tampa, FL; Minneapolis, MN; Palo Alto, CA) provide acute comprehensive inpatient medical and rehabilitation care for complex and severe polytraumatic injuries. They maintain a full staff of dedicated rehabilitation professionals and consultants from other specialties related to polytrauma.

Polytrauma Rehabilitation Network Sites (PNS). Twenty-one regional PNS teams with dedicated interdisciplinary rehabilitation professionals to manage the post-acute outpatient needs of polytrauma patients and help to coordinate life-long rehabilitation services.

Polytrauma Support Clinic Teams (PSCT). PSCTs are local teams of providers with rehabilitation expertise that assist in the management of stable polytrauma outpatients through direct care, consultation with other PSC facilities, and the use of tele-rehabilitation technologies, as needed.

Polytrauma Point of Contact (PPOC). All remaining VA facilities have a designated PPOC who is knowledgeable about the PSC. PPOCs are responsible for ensuring that patients are referred to a facility capable of providing the level of services required.

Polytrauma Transitional Rehabilitation. Transitional rehabilitation offers a progressive return to independent living through a structured program focused on restoring home, community, and vocational skills in a controlled, therapeutic setting. Transitional rehabilitation programs for veterans and Active duty service members with TBI are located at the four PRCs in Richmond, Tampa, Palo Alto and Minneapolis.

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