From left: Conal McGlone, Clinical Psychologist; Maeve O’Reilly and Deirdre Mulvey, Clinical Nurse Specialists, Cardiac Rehabilitation; and Lindsay Bright, Community Physiotherapist, CHO1.
The Cardiac Rehabilitation Team at Sligo University Hospital has been shortlisted for the Irish Healthcare Awards under the ‘Sustainable Healthcare Project of the Year’ category.
The project called ‘The Leitrim Community Outreach Model: Delivering High-Performance Cardiac Rehabilitation Closer to Home’was devised by two Clinical Nurse Specialists at the hospital. The aim of the initiative is to provide outreach Cardiac Rehabilitation to people living in Leitrim in order to maximise participation.
Maeve O’Reilly, Clinical Nurse Specialist for Cardiac Rehabilitation was one of the originators of the project. She explains, “Cardiac Rehabilitation is a medically supervised programme consisting of exercise training, education on heart healthy-living, stress management, psychological support for people with heart-related problems and cardiac monitoring which is provided throughout the programme.
“The Cardiac Rehabilitation programme not only helps patients regain their quality of life, it helps to reduce the risk of a future cardiac event and may even help reverse the progression of cardiovascular disease.
“Attending the programme enables patients to recover quickly from their cardiac event and return to an active life as soon as possible. However, we identified that distance from the hospital was a barrier to attendance so we piloted the programme in Carrick on Shannon and as that was so successful, we introduced the programme fully in Drumshanbo. The programme is delivered there twice a year.
“The programme runs over 10 weeks and mirrors the programme in the hospital; all patients avail of identical exercise and medical facilities. The programme is delivered by a multidisciplinary team comprising two Clinical Nurse Specialists, a Community-based Physiotherapist, Clinical Pharmacist, a Dietitian and a Clinical Psychologist. Dr Declan Loftus, a local GP provides medical cover and Dr Donal Murray, Consultant Cardiologist, Sligo University Hospital is the Medical Director. Approximately 360 patients have participated in the programme to date.
“I am delighted that our project was shortlisted for this award which recognises the importance of the programme for our clients in Leitrim.”