Cardiac rehabilitation is a programme of health advice, psychological support and exercise. It has been clinically proven to aid recovery following a heart attack or heart surgery and also helps to lower your chances of suffering a heart attack in the future.

Cardiac rehabilitation is split into four phases. During each phase there will be a qualified nurse available to give you any advice or information you need.

Phase 1

This first phase usually takes place in hospital where patients are given advice about risk factors and guidance about their recovery. Information leaflets about the service are also provided.

Phase 2

After you come out of hospital you will be contacted by one of our specially trained district nurses. They will arrange a suitable time to visit and will offer you health education and support on a one to one basis. They will also be able to give you more information about the next phases of the programme. If you haven't heard anything after the first week of returning home from hospital, please call one of our co-ordinating nurses, their details are below.

Phase 3

Phase 3 normally starts between 2 and 4 weeks after your cardiac event and lasts for about 8 weeks. It consists of health education, exercise and relaxation and is offered in group sessions, normally at a local leisure centre. These sessions are staffed by nurses, fitness instructors and physiotherapists. With venues across Northumberland you can pick the one that is best for you and are welcome to bring along a friend or relative.

Phase 4

After you have finished phase 3, your cardiac rehabilitation nurse will help you to move into a long term programme to help you stay healthy. You will be able to attend fitness classes and if you have chronic heart disease your GP will give you an annual check-up.

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The team

The service is provided by a team of professionals which may include a district nurse, a fitness instructor, a physiotherapist and your GP.

Location of service

Your local hospital, at home and local leisure centre.

You can visit the following links if you need information on other services we provide in our hospitals and the community including cardiology, heart failure nurses, chronic pain management, emergency care.

Contacts

If you live in Berwick, Alnwick or Tynedale and would like more information please  Alice Whincup, primary care cardiac rehabilitation and vascular disease specialist nurse, on 01665 511 978  (Monday to Friday, 9 - 5pm).

If you live in Castle Morpeth, Blyth Valley, or Wansbeck and would like more information please contact Margaret Jamieson, primary care cardiac rehabilitation and vascular disease specialist nurse on 01670 629582 (Monday to Friday, 9 - 5pm).