What is a cardiac care center? More than 126 million people in the United States had cardiovascular disease between the years 2015 and 2018, according to the American Heart Association. If you're one of the millions of Americans with a diagnosed cardiac condition, take a look at the answers to the top questions patients have about care centers and rehabs.
What Services Does This Type of Center Provide?
The answer to this question may depend on the individual medical facility. Some care centers offer a wide range of services, including everything from testing and diagnostic imaging to outpatient surgical procedures and post-care rehabilitation. Specific services may include echocardiograms, cardiac stress tests, blood tests, EKGs, cardiac monitoring, dietary consultations, exercise/activity consultations, pacemaker insertion, defibrillator insertion, or post-device insertion care.
What Is a Cardiac Care Rehab?
While some centers offer comprehensive services (from diagnosis through treatment or post-op care), others focus on rehabilitation and health maintenance. This type of center is similar to a physical therapy provider—but with a focus on cardiovascular care.
Like a general physical therapy rehab, a cardiac rehab center offers patients the chance to exercise, build strength, and gain endurance under the guided care of a medical professional. Along with physical activity, a specialized cardiac center may also provide dietary and lifestyle coaching or ongoing heart monitoring.
Does Every Heart Patient Need Ongoing Cardiac Care?
There's no universal answer to this question. Most people with serious cardiovascular conditions will require some form of ongoing care. Whether this is a series of follow-up visits with a cardiologist, heart monitoring, repeat tests (such as EKGs, echocardiograms, or stress tests), lifestyle factor assistance, or rehab depends on the patient's individual needs, overall health, and the doctor's recommendation.
Even though some patients may not need extensive ongoing care, cardiac services or rehab can help to boost your health and increase your chances of a successful recovery. Regular services offer preventative and maintenance types of benefits. These make it possible for the cardiologist to catch changes in your heart quickly, prevent future damage, and reduce risks.
How Can a New Patient Find a Clinical Cardiac Care Center?
If you have a recent diagnosis, need a diagnosis, or need to find post-op/rehab care, start with your regular medical provider. A primary care physician (PCP) can refer you to a cardiologist and cardiac care center. Patients who need ongoing rehab services may also need a referral or prescription from a cardiologist.