There are at UHN:
Cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of death in Canada. A previous cardiovascular incident puts you at risk for future problems and even an early death. Participation in cardiovascular rehabilitation can reduce the odds of dying from another heart attack or stroke by 50%.
Building on an educational curriculum to assist in achieving health behaviour change, the Cardiovascular Rehabilitation Program is committed to helping you:
The program will help you learn the skills to live and thrive with your cardiovascular condition. Using the
Cardiac College – Living and Thriving with Cardiovascular Disease as a framework for discussion and behaviour change, the program staff will work with you to meet your goals.
We take an approach combining exercise and education. The Cardiac College supports you in making the necessary changes to improve health behaviours for long-term change. The multidisciplinary team – physicians, nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, kinesiologists, dietitians, psychologists and social workers work together to support your rehabilitation journey. We have one of North America's largest and most comprehensive cardiovascular rehabilitation programs.
The program helps people with heart disease improve their cardiac health and fitness. It also helps them reduce their chance of future cardiac incidents through lasting lifestyle and behaviour changes.
Cardiac College was developed specifically to help guide patients in developing positive and healthy behaviour to live and thrive with cardiovascular disease. Patients will learn skills to:
The program is designed for people with:
The Cardiovascular Rehabilitation program of education and exercise that includes 1 session per week at Rumsey Centre.
One-to-one counselling sessions with a psychologist or social worker are available for patients who meet the criteria or for selected patients to help deal with issues such as depression, anxiety, trouble sleeping, anger and social and emotional issues.
One-to-one counselling with program registered dietitians, for patients who meet the criteria or for selected patients, will assist you to deal with issues related to healthy eating for your heart.
In group education sessions, a variety of topics will be discussed including:
Family members are encouraged to attend these education sessions.
Participants begin the program with a cardio-pulmonary exercise assessment. This measures their cardiovascular fitness. Based on the participant's needs, goals and fitness level, the team creates a personalized program of exercise and education.
Participants attend 1 supervised exercise class a week at our Rumsey site. The classes are offered during the day and evening, Monday to Friday. Each class has a warm-up and stretching routine, walking aerobics and resistance training (hand-held weights) and an interactive educational session. We also provide peer-to-peer support.
You'll be expected to carry out your own exercise program at home 4 more times a week and to keep a weekly diary to help you with your progress.
Exercise staff work closely with participants to help them achieve their goals and progress their exercise throughout the program.
Heart health is a lifelong commitment. To help graduates of our other cardiac rehab programs maintain their lifestyle changes, we offer a program called
Heart Health for Life. This includes education sessions, exercise programs and volunteer peer support opportunities to help you stay connected to a heart-healthy lifestyle.
Your first appointment can take up to 2 hours. Please wear or bring comfortable clothes (shorts, t-shirts, button-front blouse for women). During this visit, you will complete a 12 Lead Electrocardiogram (ECG), body composition measurement and meet with a program physician to assess your progress following your heart event. Follow-up appointments usually take about an hour to 90 minutes.
Learn more about
what you can expect when you have a clinic appointment.
Visit our Health Information section to find dedicated resources to help you understand your condition. Find the information you're looking for.
Our patients benefit from the expertise of a wide range of skilled rehabilitation professionals who work together to provide you with the best care possible following your heart event. Each team member contributes specialized knowledge to the care we provide.
Medical Director: Dr. Paul Oh
Senior Clinical Director: Patricia Mlekuz
Cardiac Rehab Manager: Valerie Skeffington
Individuals receiving cardiac or diabetes rehabilitation will work with some or all of the following rehabilitation team members, depending on their needs:
You will be contacted with information about your first appointment.
Please bring the following to your appointment. Not all of these items may be needed for your appointment. Our clinic or your referring doctor will let you know what you must bring.
Please arrive 15 minutes before your appointment.
When you arrive, you will sign in with the receptionist. You will need your health card (OHIP card) to sign-in. If you do not have an OHIP card, please bring another form of government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license or passport.
You may be given a Measuring Health Equity Questionnaire to fill out. This form contains questions about your background. We collect this information to find out who we serve and what unique needs you may have. The form is voluntary and you can choose ‘prefer not to answer’ to any or all questions. However, the information you choose to give us will help us improve the quality of care for you and others.
First appointments take longer than follow-up appointments. Your first appointment can take 2 hours or more. Follow-up appointments usually take 15 to 30 minutes. We do everything we can to stay on time but sometimes unforeseen circumstances may delay your appointment.
At the end of your first appointment, the nurse or doctor will give you a contact list for your health care team. If you don’t get a contact list, feel free to ask for it.
After every appointment, a member of your health care team will tell you about your next visit. Be sure you understand what is going to happen next. For example, know the time and place of your next visit or if someone will call you with this information.
If you are unsure about what your next steps are, don’t be afraid to ask a member of your team. We are here to help you.
We understand that reaching us by phone can sometimes be difficult. Often our phone lines are busy or are turned over to the message centre so our staff can prepare for clinic visits or help other patients. We make every effort to return your call within 24 hours. Our staff will try to reach you 2 times. If we are not able to reach you directly you may need to call us again.