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February is American Heart Month.  This month focuses attention on heart disease, from learning about signs and symptoms to decreasing your risk factors.  According to the CDC, heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States for men and women.  The statistics are alarming. 1 person dies every 34 seconds of heart disease and every 40 seconds someone has a heart attack. In other words, every year 697,000 Americans die of heart disease and 805,000 Americans experience a heart attack.  However, did you know that 80% of premature heart attacks and strokes are preventable? Regular physical activity, a healthy diet, avoiding tobacco use, and managing common medical conditions, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and blood sugar, or diabetes are all very important factors to minimize the risk of heart disease.

After experiencing either a heart attack, stents, heart surgery, or heart failure, people often wonder what they do now. Logan Health – Conrad’s Cardiac Rehabilitation service is a supervised program designed to help your heart’s future.  It is led by a team approach provided by physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists, pharmacists and dieticians.  Through an individualized program, patients will learn how to properly exercise to promote a healthy heart, learn about heart-healthy living, how to manage risk factors for heart disease and how to reduce stress.

Logan Health – Conrad’s (LHC) Cardiac Rehabilitation program is an American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (AACVPR) certified program. This certification is a recognition of LHC’s commitment to improving the quality of life of patients by enhancing standards of care. In addition to the traditional center-based program, LHC’s Cardiac Rehab also offers a hybrid cardiac rehabilitation program, which allows the cardiac rehab team to reach out to more patients with limited resources in our rural areas. The programs take place in Logan Health – Conrad’s Wellness Center with a group of other cardiac rehab patients. “The interaction with other cardiac patients within the Wellness Center provides an extra support system for all of our patients, in addition to the encouragement received from family and friends,” said Stephanie Nelson, Logan Health – Conrad’s Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Coordinator.

“Steph encouraged and motivated me through the program. I would recommend the program to others,” said a recent LHC Cardiac Rehab patient. “The cardiac rehab team is very caring and willing to answer questions,” said another patient about their experience through the program. “We are very lucky to have these staff members and services in our local hospital!”

“We have amazing people that come into our program who are now unsure of what lies ahead of them for their health,” concluded Nelson. “I am fortunate enough to be part of a program that provides a safe landing for them and when they graduate, they feel better than ever.”

February 13-19 is Cardiac Rehab Week. To raise awareness to heart disease, the LHC Cardiac Rehab team planned fun activities for employees to participate in. Every Friday in February, staff wear red in support for Heart Month and for loved ones, friends and co-workers who have been impacted by heart disease. LHC employees also have an opportunity to learn more about the importance of the cardiac rehab program by participating in Cardiac Rehab Bingo, which includes a door prize that will be given to the first Bingo winner! Also during Cardiac Rehab Week, staff and cardiac rehab patients will be offered heart-healthy snacks and recipes provided by our LHC Cardiac Rehab team.

Logan Health – Conrad would like to encourage community members to take charge of their heart health and know the risk factors for heart disease. If you think you may qualify for Cardiac Rehab, speak with your physician or call our Cardiac Rehab Department at 406-271-3211 ext. 447.