Study looks at long-term cardiac care
A study to investigate a long-term maintenance program for cardiac patients is underway at Caulfield Hospital.
More than 90 patients have already been enrolled in the phase three cardiac rehabilitation pilot project after staff identified a gap in follow-up care for people who have experienced heart attacks, cardiac surgery or heart failure.
The study, which is a joint initiative of the cardiac rehabilitation unit and Caulfield Community Health Service, aims to provide the first formal evaluation in Australia of longer-term exercise and ongoing support and education.
Cardiac Rehabilitation Unit Nurse Manager Lynn O’Neill said literature indicated phase three cardiac rehabilitation programs led to reductions in mortality, morbidity and re-admissions with improvement in cardiac risk factors and quality of life.
Patients are invited to take part in the study on the completion of their outpatient cardiac rehabilitation program.
Researchers aim to enrol 120 patients and they are randomised to either a control or an intervention group.
The control group receives usual home exercise guidelines while the intervention group attend scheduled exercise sessions at the Healthy Living Centre, a monthly support group and a monthly coach phone call.
The study, which aims to inform best practice in cardiac rehabilitation, is expected to be completed early next year.