Cardiac & Pulmonary Rehabilitation

Our cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation programs are available for people who have experienced a heart attack, heart surgery, coronary angioplasty, angina or a related heart problem. We emphasize medical evaluation, exercise training, education and counseling. 

What to expect from rehabilitation

Cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation starts with getting to know you. First, we’ll assess your physical health and activity. Then we’ll schedule specialized exercise programs two or three times a week at our facilities with medical supervision. Your oxygen levels, heart rate, blood pressure and other health metrics may be monitored to ensure the exercise is done safely and effectively.

Under the direction of a medical director, we’ll also provide targeted education to help you manage your condition. The topics we review include physiology, nutrition, weight management, smoking cessation, stress management, medication and managing specific symptoms.

The benefits of cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation include:

  • A better quality of life
  • Reduced risk of future heart problems
  • Increased confidence and emotional well-being
  • Improved ability to perform daily activities
  • Decreased symptoms of diseases and conditions
  • More energy, less shortness of breath and easier breathing
  • Less anxiety and depression
  • Reduced hospital admissions and readmissions

Cardiac rehabilitation

Virginia Mason Franciscan Health offers award-winning, comprehensive cardiac rehabilitation services to help you recover from heart attack, heart surgery or coronary artery disease and manage heart failure in a supportive environment. Our heart care teams will design an individual recovery plan to help you maintain health and prevent future heart problems. All of our cardiac rehabilitation programs are certified or seeking certification by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (AACVPR).

For cardiac rehabilitation to be successful, you’ll receive support in adopting a heart-healthy lifestyle, which includes not smoking, eating healthy and getting enough exercise. Our groups, classes and programs are designed to help you recover from heart attack or surgery.

Pulmonary rehabilitation

Our comprehensive program is designed to help you manage moderate to advanced chronic lung disease, including symptoms of breathlessness and trouble with daily activities. It can also help you prepare for or recover from lung surgery. Our respiratory specialists, nurses and/or exercise physiologists will work with you to create a plan tailored to your needs. The program at St. Michael Medical Center is AACVPR-certified for pulmonary rehabilitation, and the program at St. Joseph Medical Center is one of 100 programs selected for sponsorship by the COPD Foundation.

We’re dedicated to providing a holistic approach to health. Along with a twice-weekly guided exercise program and education on managing your condition, we provide comforting psychosocial support to help you manage difficulties you may be facing.

Education and counseling

Education and counseling are provided to help you understand your heart condition and to help you adopt a heart-healthy lifestyle. Topics we'll discuss include:

  • Heart function and disease
  • Your specific heart condition
  • Activity and exercise guidelines
  • Nutrition
  • Cardiac warning signs
  • Stress management and relaxation
  • Emotional health

Learn about ongoing support and resources

Insurance information

Health plan benefits for cardiac rehabilitation vary among health insurance companies. Some insurance policies require pre-authorization services. Please contact your insurance carrier to determine coverage under your specific plan or ask for assistance from the cardiac rehabilitation staff.

Register today

A provider’s referral is needed to participate in cardiac or pulmonary rehabilitation. Please contact us at your preferred location to have a referral form sent to you or faxed to your provider’s office.