Cardiac rehabilitation program coordinator receives CCRP Certification

Cardiac specialists team

(l-r): Steven Kunkes, MD; Carly Arsenault, MS, CEP; Joe Petreycik, RN, MSN, CEP, CCRP; Peg Merdinger, RN, BSN; Kathy McCarthy, RN, BSN; and Zulay Villalva, Patient Accounts Representative


Northeast Medical Group’s Steven Kunkes, MD, medical director of Bridgeport Hospital’s Cardiac Rehabilitation & Wellness Program and Stuart Zarich, MD, chairman of the department of Cardiology, are proud to announce that Joe Petreycik, RN, cardiac rehab and clinical stroke coordinator, recently achieved Certified Cardiac Rehab Professional (CCRP) certification.

CCRP certification resulted from a needs assessment that the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (AACVPR) conducted among its members. Responses revealed a desire and strong support for a profession-specific certification. The AACVPR’s position is that individuals who provide cardiac rehab services should possess a common core of both professional and clinical competencies, regardless of academic discipline. Awareness of the certification is spreading and anyone on the multidisciplinary team is eligible for the exam. The CCRP credential was recently reviewed by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and has met the criteria for inclusion on their list of certifications included in the Magnet Recognition Program Demographic Data Collection Tool (DDCT).

The Cardiac Rehabilitation & Wellness Program helps people with cardiovascular and pulmonary problems recover faster and improve their quality of life. It takes a multidisciplinary, team approach with doctors, nurses and exercise physiologists to provide exercise, education, counseling, and support for patients and their families. “Giving patients the confidence to rehabilitate safely, and watching them feel better because of it, is the most rewarding part of the program,” said Petreycik. “