Redefining Rehabilitation

Redefining Rehabilitation

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

SARASOTA, Fla. (Jan. 23, 2017) – Sarasota Memorial Hospital appointed a national leader in physiatry and spinal cord injury treatment – one with childhood roots in Sarasota – to guide and expand care in its new Rehabilitation Pavilion, scheduled to open this spring.

Sarasota Memorial’s new Medical Director of Rehabilitation Services Samuel P. Grissom, MD, 53, will oversee a full spectrum of services to meet the complex medical, rehabilitation and mobility needs of people recovering from brain and spinal cord injuries, stroke and neurological disorders, and orthopedic and musculoskeletal conditions.

Board-certified in Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation with a subspecialty in Spinal Cord Injury Medicine, Dr. Grissom will work closely with Associate Medical Director David Siegel, MD, and Sarasota Memorial’s multi-disciplinary team of physicians and rehabilitation specialists aiding the recovery of people affected by physical, neurological and cognitive disabilities.  

Dr. Grissom, who grew up in Sarasota, brings a new specialty to the community – he is the only physician certified in Spinal Cord Injury Medicine by the American Board of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation in southwest Florida, according to the national credentialing organization. 

“In every other move I’ve made in my career, location was always secondary,” Dr. Grissom said. “My decisions were always based on career opportunity and how I could help fill a need in the community. This time around, those were important considerations, but location was a key factor. It will be my privilege to reconnect with the community I grew up in and join the exceptional team at SMH.” 

With Sarasota Memorial’s new $50 million rehabilitation center poised to open soon, he said he welcomed the chance to return to his roots. During his youth, he spent his fair share of time in the SMH Emergency Care Center with broken bones and other injuries. “Over the years, I have had many family members receive great care here, myself included,” he said.   

After graduating from Bradenton Christian School in 1981, he headed to Tulane University in New Orleans for his undergraduate degree and then the University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville, where he earned his medical degree in 1990. He completed his residency in physical medicine and rehabilitation at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.   

Over the next 20 years, Dr. Grissom went on to achieve national recognition as a physician, researcher and professor at several leading academic and rehabilitation hospitals, including an extensive career and associate medical directorships at Emory University School of Medicine and the Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation in Chester. For the past 10 years, he has served as medical director of Methodist Rehabilitation Center and its Spinal Cord Injury Program in Jackson, Miss., where he was the only spinal cord injury specialist in the state. 

In addition to his academic positions and clinical practice, Dr. Grissom has been active in research and published numerous research studies, ranging from inpatient rehabilitation of total hip and knee patients to transitional care for spinal cord injury patients and spasticity management in stroke patients. He has been a sought-after speaker and presented at dozens of brain injury and spinal cord injury conferences. 

Dr. Grissom’s practice, part of Sarasota Memorial’s First Physicians Group, is located on the hospital’s main campus, 1700 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota.  

The Rehabilitation Pavilion at Sarasota Memorial Hospital

When it opens in the spring of 2017, Sarasota Memorial’s new five-story, 74,000-square-foot Rehabilitation Pavilion will have 44 private patient rooms, innovative indoor and outdoor therapy environments and outpatient programs tailored to meet the complex medical, rehabilitation and mobility needs of people recovering from brain and spinal cord injuries, stroke and neurological disorders, and orthopedic and musculoskeletal conditions. It also will play an integral role in helping Sarasota Memorial’s Trauma Center team provide coordinated and integrated care to patients recovering from traumatic injuries. The pavilion is replacing the hospital’s existing inpatient rehabilitation unit in the East Tower, which has served the community for more than 30 years.

About Sarasota Memorial

Sarasota Memorial Health Care System, an 819-bed regional medical center, is among the largest public health systems in Florida. With more than 5,000 employees, 900 physicians and 650 volunteers, it is one of Sarasota County's largest employers. A community hospital founded in 1925 and governed by the nine-member publicly elected Sarasota County Public Hospital Board, Sarasota Memorial Hospital is a not-for-profit hospital with specialized expertise in heart, vascular, cancer, rehabilitation and neuroscience care, as well as a network of outpatient centers offering a full continuum of services – from urgent care clinics and physician groups, laboratory and diagnostic imaging centers, to home health and skilled nursing and rehabilitation.