Areas Of Need

Because of you, there is hope . . . the hope that a teenager with a spinal cord injury can rejoin his high school class in time for graduation; the hope that a stroke survivor can walk his daughter down the aisle on her wedding day; and the hope that a mom recovering from a traumatic brain injury can once again care for her family and home.

Car accidents, sports injuries, strokes . . . these traumatic events can change your family’s life in an instant. Your support helps Madonna Rehabilitation Hospitals care for seriously ill and injured children and adults. Your help ensures:

  • Access to the latest therapy techniques for our patients
  • Innovative state-of-the-art technology
  • Cutting-edge research for the best possible recoveries

Your support gives our patients HOPE. Our work is only possible because you care.  

Pediatric Rehabilitation

“Sometimes superheroes reside in the hearts of small children fighting BIG battles.” That quote appears in Madonna’s Lincoln Campus pediatric outpatient waiting room and it drives our work to help children and their families in need. From robotic walking equipment like the Lokomat, to indoor playgrounds that promote therapeutic fun, generosity continues to make a difference in elevating the level of pediatric rehabilitation in Lincoln and Omaha. Donor support has helped Madonna’s pediatric program become:

  • The only rehabilitation unit accredited in both Pediatric Specialty Program and Stroke Specialty Program
  • One of only three rehabilitation units accredited in both Pediatric Specialty Program and Spinal Cord Injury of Care
  • One of only seven accredited in both Pediatric Specialty Program and Brain Injury Specialty Program. That level of expertise is only possible with philanthropic support.

Institute for Rehabilitation Science and Engineering

Madonna’s Research Institute is located within the hospital and collaborates with researchers, clinicians, academic scientists and business leaders across the country to develop and patent new technology. The Institute also helps to develop best practices for using rehabilitation technology with individuals recovering from profound injuries and illnesses.

The Research Institute is, in essence, a living laboratory that develops technological solutions to aid in therapy and to return patients to their life roles. Research takes place within four centers of excellence:

  • The Movement and Neurosciences Center – includes a state-of-the art laboratory for analyzing human movement.
  • The Communication Center – focuses on collaborative research related to improving ways for patients, who have lost their ability to communicate, to interact with others through computers or computer-aided speech, or other adaptive technologies.
  • The Rehabilitation Engineering Center of Excellence – designs, develops, adapts, applies and evaluates solutions to barriers encountered by people with disabilities.

Donor support of the Research Institute funds equipment and pilot studies that lay the groundwork for major federal research grants. 

Madonna Omaha Campus

To address the underserved need for post-acute care rehabilitation services in the metro area, Madonna opened a 110-bed Omaha Campus at 17500 Burke St., just west of Village Pointe, in October 2016.  The new facility includes healing therapy spaces, state-of-the-art technology, a warm-water therapy pool and a simulated community.

The Omaha Campus will continue Madonna’s expertise as a national leader in specialized rehabilitation programs for:

  • Brain Trauma
  • Spinal Cord Injuries
  • Stroke, Neurological Diseases and Pulmonary Conditions
  • Pediatric Rehabilitation

Madonna is collaborating with the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) and it clinical partner, Nebraska Medicine, to staff Madonna’s Omaha Campus. It is also financially supporting a Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PM&R) residency program with UNMC.

A newly-signed physician coverage agreement aims to improve patient care and strengthen the longstanding relationship between Children’s Hospital & Medical Center and Madonna Rehabilitation Hospitals.  Children’s will now provide specialty physician medical services for Madonna’s pediatric unit in Omaha.

The Omaha Campus Campaign funds the creation of this world-class hospital.

Cutting-Edge Technology

The human brain has the ability to reorganize itself to compensate for injury and disease – to form new neural or brain connections and pathways. This ability of the brain is called neuroplasticity.

Specific therapies and specialized technology have been found to encourage these neuroplastic qualities of the brain. In order to give patients at Madonna the best outcomes possible, generous donors are funding equipment such as the following:

  • The Indego and Ekso exoskeleton bionic suits – enable individuals with lower extremity paralysis to stand-up and walk over ground. By exercising paralyzed limbs, the exoskeleton suit can begin the process of reactivating the pathways in the brain that help make walking possible.
  • The Armeo Spring – is an upper extremity technology designed to retrain arm and hand function following stroke, spinal cord injury, traumatic brain injury or other neurological illness. Therapists use the Armeo Spring to create the thousands of repetitions necessary to retrain the brain while the patient is immersed in an on-screen virtual environment.

Therapeutic Learning Center

In 1999, Madonna launched Kit’s Academy Therapeutic Learning Center (TLC), the only on-site, classroom-based hospital program of its kind in the region. TLC helps student patients maintain and, if necessary, re-learn academic work; learn new study skills and coping strategies; and work with parents and schools to provide the necessary services and support to make a student’s transition back to school as successful as possible. TLC will be replicated on the Omaha Campus.

TLC services are offered at no cost to patients. Because TLC is educational in nature, medical insurance does not cover the cost of patient sessions and education funds are not available because the services are provided in a medical setting. Offering TLC services at no cost is important since nearly 1/3 of our pediatric patients qualify for Medicaid. TLC is completely dependent on donor support and helps ensure that school re-entry is successful for both the student and the school.

The Therapeutic Learning Classroom has served more than 230 pediatric patients from more than 80 different school districts in the past three years in the Lincoln Campus.

Outcomes for students served:

  • 3.22 average increase in reading grade level
  • 4.31 average increase in math grade level
  • 97 percent return to school rate

We want to bring this type of rehabilitation and learning environment to Madonna’s Omaha Campus to serve our youngest, most vulnerable patients.

First Hope Equipment Fund

Kevin Werts recalled the joy his son felt after receiving an all-terrain wheelchair. That’s why Kevin helped launch Madonna’s First Hope Patient Equipment Fund in 2012 with a $100,000 gift from Cabela’s CLUB. The fund helps pay for equipment that is not covered by insurance but that makes a difference in the quality of a patient’s life.

Funds support the purchase of equipment for mobility, communication, environment control, activities of daily living and adaptive sports. As an example, the program has purchased iPads and communication apps for pediatric patients who are non-verbal because of an accident or disease. The fund recently assisted in providing matching funds for an eye gaze system for a toddler with paralysis below the neck so that she could play games and turn the pages of a digital book by using her eyes.

To date, the fund has granted 92 requests which is why financial support is always needed. According to Kevin, “It has been gratifying for Cabela’s CLUB to see the benefits of this program.”

Adaptive Sports and Recreation

Taylor Graham never gave tennis a second thought before a 2013 motorcycle accident left him paralyzed. Recreation therapist Rick Haith introduced Taylor to wheelchair tennis and he was hooked. With the help of the Adaptive Sports and Recreation Fund, Taylor received stipends to travel to regional tournaments and qualified for the U.S. Open Wheelchair Tennis Tournament where he was ranked #1 in the Quad A division.

 In order to encourage a healthy lifestyle and community participation, Madonna offers an adapted sports and recreation program for inpatients, outpatients and community members. Activities include wheelchair tennis, power soccer, bowling, swimming, fishing, archery, marksmanship, billiards, Frisbee golf and wheelchair basketball.

Funds are needed to support local tournaments and provide travel stipends to assist members of the Madonna Magic Wheelchair Basketball team and the Madonna Match Point Wheelchair Tennis team participate in regional tournaments. Gifts to this fund also helps purchase equipment for the Adapted Sports and Recreation equipment loan program which includes sports wheelchairs, hand cycles and adapted fishing equipment.

Gifts to the Foundation are either restricted or unrestricted. Restricted gifts support programs designated by the donor. Unrestricted gifts are allocated by the Foundation Board of Directors to the hospital’s area of greatest needs, including the critical work of securing funding for those priorities.

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