PDH New Cardiac Rehabilitation Nurse

Friday, 25 October 2013
Walking an extra 150 metres over a six minute test might not seem a lot, but to someone recovering from a major cardiac illness that can be considered a major achievement.

PDH’s new cardiac rehabilitation nurse Toni Kent is helping cardiac patients take their small steps towards recovery.

“We help people to set goals and then re-evaluate as they go along. We’ve had one patient walk an extra 150 metres in the six minute walk which was a great effort,” Ms Kent said.

The cardiac rehabilitation program supports people who have suffered a heart attack, had cardiac surgery or have had chronic heart failure. Individual and group options are available.

An ongoing group program is held weekly at Active Health Portland and involves exercise and education components that are tailored to the needs and health of individual participants.

The physical program is supervised by a physio and is designed to increase strength and mobility with a safe and supportive environment.

The education program is presented by a variety of allied health professionals and includes advice relating to pharmacy, diet, occupational therapy, physiotherapy and psychology.

People can join the eight-week program at any time. The sessions are from 9-11am Wednesdays.

Ms Kent can also see people on a one-to-one basis and develop individual action plans to help them return to good health. Those not able or wanting to join a group can also be referred to specific health professionals as needed.

“We look at risk and lifestyle factors for anyone who has been through a cardiac event and also prepare people to return to work,” she said.

Ms Kent’s role also involves post-acute care and discharge planning and she works in close association with the Hospital Admission Risk Program (HARP). She transferred to the position after working for the past two years as associate nursing unit manager on the PDH acute ward. 

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