Cardiac Rehabilitation Week 2020
National Cardiac Rehabilitation Week was celebrated Feb. 9-15, 2020 to draw attention to the role of cardiac rehabilitation in improving the health and physical performance of individuals at risk for heart disease and/or those diagnosed with heart disease or dysfunction. Initiated by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (AACVPR), the week-long observance is celebrated annually during American Heart Month.
Referral to a cardiac rehabilitation outpatient program upon hospital discharge is a Class 1 indication in clinical guidelines for myocardial infarction, percutaneous coronary intervention, coronary artery bypass graft, chronic stable angina and chronic systolic congestive heart failure in some populations. Additional eligible diagnoses for program entry include heart valve repair or replacement, heart transplantation and symptomatic peripheral arterial disease. Evidence demonstrates that participation in early outpatient cardiac rehabilitation results in:
- Reduced all-cause mortality ranging from 12% to 24%
- Reduced cardiac mortality from 26% to 31%
- Reduced hospital readmission rates
- A strong dose-response relationship between the number of cardiac rehabilitation sessions and long-term outcomes
- Improved adherence with preventative medications
- Improved function and exercise capacity
- Improved mood and quality of life
- Improved modifiable risk factors
This year’s theme, “New Start Better Heart,” honors the patients, families and healthcare professionals who are dedicated to giving cardiac rehabilitation patients a new start. To celebrate both Cardiac Rehabilitation Week and American Heart Month, Bridgeport Hospital’s Cardiac Rehabilitation Program launched a cardiac support group for patients, families and friends, and community members who are directly or indirectly battling heart disease. Meetings are held the first Wednesday of each month, from 6 -7 pm at 1305 Post Road, Suite 105, Fairfield). Walk-ins are welcome.
“Cardiac rehabilitation is a powerful tool in the treatment of heart disease,” said Steven Kunkes, MD. “Cardiac Rehabilitation Week increases both patients’ and doctors’ awareness of the importance of cardiac rehabilitation after a cardiac incident like bypass surgery, cardiac stenting or valve replacement.”
“Exercise is medicine,” said Joe Petreycik, RN, cardiac rehabilitation and clinical stroke coordinator. “It can modify risk factors, and is frequently reinforced with our patients.”