Heart attack victims 'lack ongoing support'
Monday 24 August 2009
Plans to provide follow-up care for heart attack victims have fallen drastically short of government targets, with two thirds of sufferers failing to receive proper treatment to help their rehabilitation.
New figures accounting for 83,540 people found that only 34 per cent of heart attack sufferers were referred to a cardiac rehabilitation programme, despite government targets to have 85 per cent of heart patients referred to such programmes within two years.
Rehabilitation programmes are designed to help victims cope with the physical and emotional fall-outs of a heart attack. Addressing issues of diet, exercise and education, they often include input from nurses, physiotherapists, dieticians and therapists. Some doctors believe they can give heart attack patients a 26 per cent greater chance of survival in the first five years after the experience.
The study by the British Heart Foundation also found no significant increase in the numbers attending cardiac rehabilitation, and a significant lack of female patients. Only 28 per cent of patients taking part in the cardiac rehabilitation were women.
Dr Mike Knapton, associate medical director at the British Heart Foundation, said progress on helping heart attack victims after their experience had "flat-lined". "Recovery from a heart attack isn't over when a patient leaves hospital, and heart patients should be receiving the ongoing support they need," he said. "Referral to cardiac rehabilitation should be a routine part of treating heart patients; until this happens they will continue to miss out."
Professor Bob Lewin, also of the British Heart Foundation, cited lack of awareness and medical referrals to explain why a third of patients offered the service didn't take it. "Many patients are simply not aware that it exists or that they should be doing it," he said. "It is important that all of the staff within the health service understand the benefits of cardiac rehabilitation and communicate how important it is to their patients."
elephant appealThe first 23 lots in our charity auction have now gone. But there are 22 more still up for grabs
The magicians using online collaboration to push boundaries
lifeIt takes year-long dedication to get Selfridges ready for 25 December. And they're already working on plans for 2015...
Jennifer Lawrence attacks mass media again over body image
Life & Style blogs
- 1 America's 'virgin births'? One in 200 mothers 'became pregnant without having sex'
- 2 Sun will 'flip upside down' within weeks, says Nasa
- 3 Ian Watkins: Police forces probed over earlier allegations as paedophile Lostprophets singer sentenced to 35 years for child sex offences
- 4 Christmas comes early: Justin Bieber announces he's 'retiring from music'
- 5 Children evacuated from swimming pool after prosthetic leg mistaken for paedophile
- < Previous
- Next >
£30000 - £38001 per annum + Benefits: Pro-Recruitment Group: A highly respecta...
£45 - £55 per day: Randstad Education Newcastle: Level 3 Teaching Assistant in...
£21500 - £40000 per day: Randstad Education Plymouth: Randstad Education is th...
£60000 - £75000 per annum + Bonus and Benefits: Harrington Starr: A leading au...