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Community Cardiac Team

The Community Cardiac Team comprises of specialist nurses, nurse assistants and exercise physiologists. The service is split into two main areas: cardiac rehabilitation and heart failure.


Cardiac Rehabilitation

What is Cardiac Rehabilitation?

Cardiac Rehabilitation is a free service offered to anyone who has had a recent heart attack, bypass surgery or emergency same day stent. It is designed to give you all the support you need from discharge to long term recovery. Patients are referred to the service at the time of hospital discharge. We cover Plymouth, South Hams and West Devon. In some circumstances, GP referral is accepted if an acute event has happened outside of our area covered.

How can Cardiac Rehabilitation help me?

Cardiac Rehabilitation can help you and your family to:

  • Reduce your risk of further heart events
  • Return to a normal lifestyle as quickly as possible
  • Understand your condition and control any symptoms you may have
  • Get your confidence back
  • Improve your quality of life through making changes to your lifestyle


Once discharged from hospital you will be contacted by phone by one of our team who will discuss the options available to you. This could be:

  • Phone contact
  • Clinic appointment
  • Home visit


During your first contact the Cardiac Nurse will assess your personal needs and give you more information on issues that are relevant to you, such as:

  • Medications
  • Walking programme / future exercises / hobbies
  • Stress / relaxation
  • Return to work / activities of daily living / driving
  • Healthy eating
  • Giving up smoking
  • Goals for the future


Exercise and education programme

If you wish to, and are assessed as being suitable, you can be referred to a supervised exercise programme. This is run by the Community Cardiac Rehabilitation team with a specialist Exercise Instructor and a Cardiac Rehabilitation Nurse. This six week course (one morning a week) gives you the opportunity to:

  • Learn about other aspects of your recovery during the education sessions
  • Meet other people who have been through the same cardiac event or procedure


Many people find that it can help relieve anxiety, improve your confidence and help you to return to your usual activities. It can be fun too!

We run the exercise sessions at two venues in Plymouth, one at Princetown, and one at Kingsbridge. These are:

  • The YMCA Sports Centre in Honicknowle
  • The Brickfields Sports Centre in Devonport
  • The Community Centre in Princetown
  • Sports Pavilion, Queen Elizabeth II Recreation Field, Modbury


You may choose which venue you wish to attend, although waiting list times vary across the venues.

 

Heart Failure

How can the Heart Failure team help me?

The specialist team can help:

  • To manage your symptoms effectively and provide optimal treatment
  • Prevent unnecessary hospital admissions
  • Educate and maximise the ability of patients to manage their own condition effectively
  • Provide an exercise programme to improve your health and confidence


Once referred, your case will be triaged against our heart failure referral criteria. If your circumstances meet our criteria, you will be called to discuss your current condition and a home visit will be arranged. If you are well enough and further appointments are required, they will happen either at home or a clinic.

During your first appointment, the nurse will assess your personal needs and give you information on issues that are relevant to you such as:

  • Medication
  • Symptom control and self-management
  • Diet and exercise
  • Stress / relaxation
  • Goals for the future


Exercise and education programme

Patients deemed suitable by the team will be referred for assessment for Heart Failure Exercise Programme, with permission from the appropriate cardiologist if required. This six week course (one morning per week) gives you the opportunity tp:

  • Learn about other aspects of your recovery during the education sessions
  • Meet other people who are going through the same thing as you


Many people find that it can help relieve anxiety, improve your confidence and help you return to your normal activities. It can be fun too!

We run the exercise sessions at one venue in Plymouth, one in Modbury and one in Princetown. These are:

  • The Brickfields Sports centre in Devonport
  • The Community Centre in Princetown
  • The Sports Pavilion in Modbury


You may choose which venue you wish to attend, although waiting list times vary across the venues.

Long term recovery / management

Once you have left the care of the Community Cardiac Team, it is very important that you maintain the positive lifestyle changes that you have made. There is still a lot you can do to protect your heart in the future and we will discuss the various options available to you.

Feedback

"A very enjoyable 7 weeks. Support and encouragement excellent. Really worthwhile following surgery and assists with recovery."