STUART, Fla. — Dr. Christopher Rao jumped out of his office chair. He’d just learned an elderly patient at high risk of falling was resisting his advice to go to an inpatient rehabilitation facility following a hip fracture.
He strode into the exam room where Priscilla Finamore was crying about having to leave her home and husband, Freddy.
“Look, I would feel the same way if I was you and did not want to go to a nursing home, to a strange place,” Rao told her in September, holding her hand. “But the reality is, if you slip at home even a little, it could end up in a bad, bad way.”
After a few minutes of coaxing, Finamore, 89, relented and agreed to go into rehab.
Keeping patients healthy and out of the hospital is a goal for any physician. For Rao, a family doctor in this retiree-rich city 100 miles north of Miami, it’s also a wise financial strategy.