Auckland Spinal Rehabilitation Unit (ASRU) is one of two regional spinal rehabilitation services in New Zealand. ASRU offers both an inpatient and outpatient service.
The Outpatient Service, based at Auckland Spinal Unit offers regular lifelong follow-up for clients once they have been discharged from our inpatient service.
Patients are either reassessed at the Spinal Unit in Auckland or at Outreach Clinics in their local area. Our outpatient team runs outreach clinics approximately 15 times a year and travels to Hamilton, Rotorua, Taupo, Tauranga, Gisborne, Whangarei, Kawakawa and Kaitaia. Dates of these outreach clinics vary year to year and an up to date schedule can be requested from our Outpatient Coordinator.
Follow-up will be provided in a variety of ways:
ASRU offers regular team reviews approximately every 3 years. The team includes a Nurse, OT, Physiotherapist and Medical Staff.
The purpose of the review is to answer any questions clients may have and to help problem solve any issues or complications that may have arisen as a result of their spinal cord injury. A report following the review is generated with recommendations that will assist the client, GP, ACC Case Managers and other health professionals.
A client may also see the Medical Team for a medical appointment when a specific issue or complication arises which does not require the involvement of the entire team.
Remote reassessments are offered to clients between regular team reviews. A remote assessment is a short questionnaire that the client fills in and posts back to the Spinal Unit. It provides us with information about a client's current abilities and serves to highlight any issues or difficulties a client is having. Each questionnaire that is returned is followed up via telephone with a member of our outpatient team. A report is generated with recommendations for the client, GP, ACC Case Managers and other health professionals.
The ASRU provides an outpatient Urology Service for clients with spinal cord injury. Visiting urologist, John Tuckey, and a urology nursing team, review clients who have been admitted to the ASRU.
Clients living outside Auckland may be referred to local urologists for follow-up. Outpatients are seen at the ASRU or at the Manukau Surgery Centre. Referrals from GPs and healthcare professionals can be sent to the ASRU for urology review.
Discipline Specific Assessment & Treatment
Discipline specific outpatient appointments are also offered on site at ASRU. Clients can be referred for outpatient therapy by their GP, ACC Case Manager or other health professional.
Our Interdisciplinary Outpatient Team
Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)
The CNS is part of an interdisciplinary team involved in reassessment appointments and is also available to patients and community healthcare teams for advice on bowel, bladder and skin management.
A counselling service is available for outpatients who are requiring support and assistance in managing lifestyle changes. Currently the outpatient counsellor works part time.
It is recognised that individuals who sustain a spinal injury have specific nutritional needs. The spinal dietitian works across both inpatient and outpatient services.
Occupational Therapy (OT) is a health profession that focuses on assisting people to achieve as much independence, meaning and satisfaction in all aspects of their lives as they are capable of.
The service predominantly works with clients in regards to wheelchair and seating needs, hand assessment, splinting and rehabilitation, assessment of occupational performance and provision of required essential equipment.
The outpatient physiotherapy service works with clients to achieve mobility and functional goals. Physiotherapy is available for all clients who live within our catchment area who require specialist input. Those clients who live outside the Auckland region will need to stay in Auckland while attending their sessions.
The Social Work service provides assistance to inpatients to individuals with a spinal cord injury and their family/whanau who are requiring support, advocacy and information in the community.