Adherence to a cardiac rehabilitation home program model of care: a comparison to a well-established traditional on-site supervised program
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Despite the proven benefits of cardiac rehabilitation (CR), adherence to programs remains suboptimal. To improve adherence, alternative models of care, such as using home programs (HP), have been recommended. Little information exists, however, about its effect on adherence in real-world settings. Therefore, this study's primary objective was to compare adherence of patients in an HP and traditional on-site program (TP) model of CR. The secondary objective was to compare their clinical and demographic profiles and changes in cardiovascular fitness. We implemented a retrospective review of 200 consecutively enrolled patients who chose either a TP or HP model. Profile data was collected at intake assessment. Adherence, defined as attendance to prescheduled contacts or on-site visits in each respective cohort, served as a primary outcome measure. Secondary outcomes included completion of program and cardiopulmonary fitness levels at 6 months. We found that the HP cohort had patients who were significantly younger, male (significantly moreso than female), were more geographically removed from the on-site centre, were employed, and (or) had greater cardiopulmonary fitness at initiation. Similar mean attendance (p = 0.21) and completion rates (p = 0.22) were seen between models. Both groups attained similar gains in cardiovascular fitness (p = 0.79). Analysis of adherence shows the HP to be a suitable option for patients who face barriers for TP-CR participation.
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