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Neurocognitive Engagement Therapy (NET)

NET was studied in a research project funded by the Brodsky Grant from the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America. Patients in the NET group made significantly greater gains in walking and other daily living skills. Patients in the NET group were also more engaged in their therapy sessions across all therapy types. Most importantly, patients who were more engaged in therapy demonstrated greater functional gains overall.

Neurocognitive Engagement Therapy (NET) is a rehab program which was created at Phoebe and is designed for individuals
with dementia to incorporate their abilities, interests and preferences in their rehabilitation.

Montessori techniques, life review and preferred tasks and activities that are familiar and enjoyable for the patient
are used to personalize the therapy experience. Phoebe’s NET program
incorporates best practices in rehab-
ilitation with a creative, individualized approach to care that supports engagement, enjoyment and improvement for our short term rehabilitation patients.

How does NET work?
NET is designed to incorporate Montessori techniques, and begins with a life review and identifies functional tasks and activities that are familiar and enjoyable for the patient. For example, a gentleman may have enjoyed playing soccer in younger years, so instead of asking him to do repetitive leg lifts in the gym, the therapist might roll a soccer ball for him to kick. This activity serves as a creative and functional mechanism for strengthening his legs. If a patient was a musician earlier in life, therapists would focus his or her therapy on familiar movements related to playing an instrument.

Key components of NET:
• Rehabilitation professionals who are trained in the NET model and incorporate creative, individualized techniques into the short term rehabilitation process to increase engagement and improve function.
• Specially trained staff who understand the challenges of memory loss and other cognitive changes and have the skills to effectively support individuals with cognitive loss.
• Coordinated care by an interdisciplinary team committed to helping individuals with memory loss to recover, so that they can return to their home settings.
• Opportunities for socialization and activity throughout the day, so that patients are meaningfully engaged in a manner that supports recovery and enjoyment.
• Availability of a mental health professional to offer support when needed and provide guidance to the care team as they motivate and encourage individuals experiencing cognitive loss.
• A small, comfortable environment designed to support the needs and interests of individuals with memory loss and other cognitive changes.

Why NET?
Phoebe’s Neurocognitive Engagement Therapy has been empirically proven to improve rehabilitation outcomes for individuals with cognitive impairment. NET is currently offered at Phoebe Allentown and at Phoebe Wyncote. View our NET FAQ sheet for more information.

NET has been featured in The Philadelpia Inquirer, in Advance Healthcare for Occupational Therapy Practitioners, and in a video segment by WFMZ 69News at Sunrise.

For more information about Phoebe’s NET program, please call 610-794-MIND. Phoebe also offers NET training and consulting services to other long term care providers.



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