Making cardiac rehab more accessible

For most people who are recovering from a heart attack or heart surgery, or living with heart disease, a cardiac rehabilitation (cardiac rehab) program is an important part of their recovery. The program of exercise, education and counselling helps individuals regain their strength, prevent their heart condition from getting worse and reduce their risk of having heart problems in the future.

Last fall, we made Osler’s cardiac rehab program more accessible for patients by moving it out of Brampton Civic and Etobicoke General Hospitals and into the community. It’s part of Osler’s commitment to deliver exemplary care in the most appropriate setting.

Osler partnered with the City of Brampton to allow cardiac rehab patients to complete the exercise portion of their program at centrally located, City-run facilities. Exercise programs for cardiac rehab patients at Brampton Civic are now held at the nearby Chinguacousy Wellness Centre, and patients enrolled at Etobicoke General are transferred to Gore Meadows Community Centre, in Brampton. Osler’s cardiac rehab staff are on site at the community centres to supervise the first three months of the program, then City of Brampton staff take over.

Osler’s Cardiac Rehab teams continue to assess patients, enrol them in the program, and design and monitor individual rehabilitation care plans. Initial and ongoing exercise stress tests, plus education around diet, nutrition and lifestyle choices are still provided at Osler, following Cardiac Care Network guidelines.

“If someone needs to attend a regular cardiac rehab exercise class, it’s important that the location is convenient,” says Anne-Marie Graham, Director, Cardiovascular, Renal and Chronic Disease Management. “We want to encourage our patients’ long-term commitment to regaining and maintaining good heart health.”