Cardiac patients praise new gym

10th Apr 2017

A new gym which aids heart attack patients in their recovery has been officially opened at a City Hospital.

The Cardiac Rehabilitation Gym boasts new equipment and a 10-metre walking track which is solely for the use of patients who have heart conditions.

They are enrolled onto the 10-week cardiac rehabilitation programme and are monitored by specialist nurses and exercise physiologists at the gym. They can then continue to use the facility to maintain their fitness levels. An open day was held to showcase the venue which was co-designed by Jacqueline Burke, clinical lead for cardiac rehabilitation services.

Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust chairman, Richard Samuda was at the event, along with patients who have also benefitted from the programme.

They included Lakvinder Kaur Sangha, who hit the headlines in 2015, when she drove herself to hospital – as she was having a heart attack.

Lakvinder Sangha who suffered a heart attack in 2015.

The sales assistant, 48, of Tipton, arrived at Sandwell Hospital to be told she had to be operated on immediately and had two stents fitted. She was enrolled onto the Cardiac Rehabilitation Programme, and continues to maintain her fitness by going to the specialist gym.

She said: “The new facility is amazing and very impressive. I go to the gym every Wednesday and it helps me to maintain my fitness in a safe way. The exercise physiologists have monitored me throughout which helps you to feel confident in using the equipment.”

Other patients who attended told Richard Samuda, and Prof Nick Harding, chairman of Sandwell and West Birmingham Clinical Commissioning Group all about their experience with the programme.

Peter Williams, 72, underwent a major heart operation in 2015. He then joined the programme and has never looked back. Where else can you come when you have had a serious heart operation to a rehab centre that is staffed with trainers, and cardiac nurses?” he said.

(L-r) Melanie Kite, with Jacqueline Burke.

“I come here two afternoons a week and not only is it helping my condition, but socially it gets me out of the house. You get to meet people of all ages and from all walks of life.”

Jacqueline Burke said: “The Open Day has been a great success. We’ve had some really positive feedback and it was great to showcase our integrated care pathway to our working partners and patients. Cardiac rehabilitation continues to deliver high quality services for patients admitted with Acute Coronary syndrome.”  Melanie Kite will take over the service when Jacqueline retires at the end of April.
Richard Samuda added: “This is a fantastic gym. I remember it as the HR department, it’s now been beautifully done up, with lots of natural light, and is really nicely decorated.  There is lots of kit for people who are on the recovery pathway and they are surrounded by some fantastic services connected to this programme, including mental health, to wider community services and charities. It is a great example of integrated care and it is a real privilege to be at the official opening.”

Watch the video below to hear our clinicians talk about the Cardiac Rehab Programme:


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