Cardiac rehabilitation: the gateway for secondary prevention

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

Heart (British Cardiac Society)


Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) is a multidisciplinary supervised programme which typically consists of tailored exercise and education on lifestyle management and risk factor modification in cardiac patients. Participation in CR reduces morbidity and mortality, while improving quality of life following major cardiovascular events. Despite the benefits of CR, it is underutilised, generally in the 20%-30% range for eligible patients. Participation and adherence rates are particularly suboptimal in vulnerable populations, such as those of lower socioeconomic status and women. Interventions such as automated referral to CR or hybrid/virtual programmes can increase enrolment to CR. This review summarises the components of CR and provides recommendations for providers regarding participation and adherence. To better engage a larger proportion of CR-eligible patients, CR programmes may need to expand or adjust ways to deliver secondary prevention.

PubMed ID



ePub ahead of print