Cardiac Rehab gets a helping hand from creative kids


Pupils from Little Flower School in North Belfast paid a visit recently to ward 4b in the Royal Victoria Hospital to deliver a batch of colourful handmade cushions.

The ward specialises in heart surgery, and the cushions will literally give vital support to patients as they recover.

Cardiac rehabilitation nurse Alma Crowley explains ‘When patients are recovering from cardiac surgery, a cushion held against the wound will lessen the pain, particularly when coughing and these cushions will be used in the ward and will play an important part in our patients’ recovery, as well as brightening up the ward’.

About the Cardiac Rehabilitation Service

The cardiac rehabilitation service at Belfast Trust provides clinical assessment, advice, support and secondary prevention for patients following a cardiac event. The service is led by a team of nine specialist nurses, two dedicated physiotherapists and other members of the multi-professional team. Following an assessment the service is delivered through a number of approaches.

The majority of the nurses are nurse prescribers and are able to manage the patient’s condition liaising when required with the cardiologists and GPs, and includes both inpatient and outpatient care. An outpatient programme comprises of supervised exercise training, education and relaxation sessions, home visiting or attendance at an outpatient nurse led consultation.

There are three outpatient and cardiac rehabilitation programmes located in both hospital and community venues throughout Belfast, and patients are encouraged to attend for eight weeks and on completion can attend a continuation exercise class in a local leisure centre led by a cardiac rehabilitation qualified instructor or redirected to local exercise programmes and cardiac support groups.

There is overwhelming evidence that comprehensive cardiac rehabilitation is associated with a reduction in both cardiac and total mortality. Effective cardiac rehabilitation results in improved outcomes for patients with heart disease and reduces unplanned readmissions. This makes cardiac rehabilitation one of the most clinically and cost effective therapeutic interventions in cardiovascular teams within the Trust.

Further Information:

For further information regarding the rehabilitation service please contact one of the teams within the Trust.

  • Belfast City Hospital (028) 9026 3826
  • Mater Hospital (028) 9080 2362
  • Royal Group of Hospital (028) 9063 4826