Dr.ª Joana Macedo 


Dr.ª Joana Macedo

Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation – HPM

HPA Magazine 15


Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PMR), also called Physiatry, is the branch of Medicine that treats disabilities resulting from illness or injury involving any organic system. The Physiatrist thus intervenes in the functional recovery of a wide variety of diseases, namely diseases of the musculoskeletal system in general, ortho-traumatological, rheumatological, neurological, cardiac, respiratory and sphincter, both in adulthood and in paediatric age. In a simplistic way, PMR intervenes in the recovery / rehabilitation of any pathology where there is pain or any other deficit, that interferes with the patient's functionality and consequently quality of life. PMR uses non-invasive (or minimally invasive) and non-surgical therapeutic resources.


PMR is becoming increasingly important in modern societies. The reasons for the importance are well known: aging of the population, survival of the chronically ill and disabled, children with significant deficits, accident rate in developing societies (work and road accidents), among others. The rehabilitation process is an ongoing one. It can take place in a very short period of time or on the contrary can be “for life”. Rehabilitation can be provided at home, on an outpatient basis or in hospital.
The current health paradigm has widened the focus on disease/morbidity and mortality to currently measurable parameters of functionality and quality of life.
The growing demand on PMR, considered the basic standard quality in health care, has resulted in PMR being mandatory, particularly in health units with inpatient services.
There are conclusive studies of “Evidence-Based Medicine” on the benefits of rehabilitation from the acute phase that interfere with functionality, in the most diverse pathologies. Therefore, the opening of the PMR at the Hospital Particular da Madeira once again demonstrates that the Grupo HPA Saúde continues to be a reference in health care, always aiming to provide excellent care to those that need PMR.
PMR intervention is necessarily based on multidisciplinary and the complementarity of other professionals in other clinical areas and professional groups. Teamwork is essential and all elements are equally important.
We will do our best . . . for everyone’s health!

Observation and diagnosis reached by the Physiatrist Specialist leads to an individualized treatment plan adapted to the specific needs of each patient, which will then be carried out by a multidisciplinary team, including specialized therapeutic technicians (Physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists, Speech Therapists), nursing (ideally nurses dedicated to rehabilitation and daily living training activities) and other health professionals.
The PMR Unit of Hospital Particular da Madeira intends to become a reference unit in providing Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Care in the Island of Madeira, contributing to raising standards as far as outpatient and hospital health care. Therefore, the aim of the Department is to ensure an effective and excellent response in meeting the needs of rehabilitation care for all patients who are dependent / functionally limited / incapacitated and also those that can potentially recover their autonomy, with a therapeutic plan that incorporates the articulated intervention of various sectors.
The PMR Department currently consists of two functional units: The Madeira Medical Center PMR Unit and the Hospital Particular da Madeira PMR Unit. The Department intends to work in collaboration with the other medical specialties and clinical areas of the MMC and HPM.