According to a medical study published in Circulation magazine, fewer than 20 percent of patients seek rehabilitation services after a heart attack or coronary bypass surgery.
WCA Hospital has been an active force in treating at risk patients with its Cardiovascular Rehabilitation Program.
With a new facility and a professional staff, the cardiac rehab program was lacking specific equipment that could truly benefit all of the patients using its services. A grant from the Karl Peterson Unrestricted Fund, administered by the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation, in addition to proceeds from WCA's inaugural Strike Out Heart Disease Bowl-A-Thon in February, provided money to purchase monitoring devices and an assortment of exercise equipment.
"Heart disease is a serious concern for many residents in our area," said Randy Sweeney, Chautauqua Region Community Foundation executive director. "The Community Foundation is proud to provide funding for WCA Hospital to continue to help cardiac rehab patients stay healthy. Our involvement with WCA over the years has always been focused on keeping our residents healthy and safe, while providing the most necessary programs and treatments available."
Purchased equipment includes an ergometer, which is used for upper body conditioning and is especially useful for people who require rehabilitation based on reliable measuring methods; a doppler which enables staff to measure accurate blood pressure readings and to check for peripheral pulses for those who have a diminished blood flow; and a new set of hand held dumbbells which contribute to improvement in one's physical conditioning which benefit ones cardiac and overall health.
"Our team of professionals who work in the Cardiac Rehabilitation Program at WCA have successfully incorporated the new equipment into the individualized patient exercise plans. It has resulted in a more effective and safer therapy experience, along with offering greater diversity. It will also help improve outcomes with better management of risk factors for heart disease," said Brenda Fitzgerald, WCA Hospital registered nurse and cardiac rehab specialist.
WCA Hospital's Cardiovascular Rehabilitation program is located on the second floor of the main campus at 207 Foote Ave., Jamestown. For more information, visit wcahospital.org or call 664-8137.
For more information on grants and the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation, visit crcfonline.org or call 661-3390.
Brenda Fitzgerald, left, registered nurse and WCA Hospital cardiac rehab specialist, is pictured with Greg Jones, chairman of the Karl Peterson Grants Committee, and Kase Kinney, Chautauqua Region Community Foundation program associate, as Steve Kiersznowski, cardiac rehab patient, utilizes one of the new pieces of cardiac rehabilitation equipment.