Heart Patients Enjoy Renovated Cardiac Suite

With its state-of-the-art exercise equipment, monogrammed towels and flat-screen televisions, visitors to the Cardiac Rehabilitation Suite at Clara Maass Medical Center may think they've just walked into an upscale health club.

On any given day, cardiac patients can pedal on a stationary bicycle, walk on a new treadmill, work out with a CrossFit Machine, or lift free weights. When they're not exercising, they can meet with nutrition counselors, psychologists or experts who can help them stop smoking.

Located on the first floor of the Medical Center, the Cardiac Rehabilitation Suite was recently renovated and doubled in size. The additional space was needed because of the high volume of cardiac care patients undergoing treatment at CMMC. More than 500 patients a year use the cardiac rehabilitation facility and the facility has logged more than 6,000 sessions for those patients annually.

"The renovated facility will assist patients in their recovery from cardiac illnesses and procedures in a safe and healthy environment and enable them to get the follow-up care they need right here at Clara Maass Medical Center," said Fadi Chaaban, MD, Director of Cardiology for the Medical Center.

The renovation was made possible through grants from The Healthcare Foundation of New Jersey, Clara Maass Medical Center Foundation, The Hyde and Watson Foundation, and other generous donors.

Detailed attention was paid to the renovation of the suite, which features everything from soothing colors and dark wood accents, to cushioned gym flooring that provides a low-impact experience for those who walk on it.

In addition, the Cardiac Rehabilitation Suite offers a counseling and support room where patients can meet and talk to medical professionals in a private, comfortable location. Visitors also enjoy the convenience of an on-site bathroom and lockers for storing personal belongings.

The staff at Clara Maass Medical Center develops a comprehensive, individualized plan for each cardiac patient. The treatment plan may include programs for weight loss and smoking cessation, physical rehabilitation to return to work, counseling and support services, lipid and cholesterol management, heart monitoring and medical evaluations.

"Cardiac patients can now exercise, get counseling and recuperate from cardiac procedures in this elegant suite, using state-of-the-art equipment right here at Clara Maass Medical Center," said Mary Ellen Clyne, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Clara Maass Medical Center. "Our goal is to provide them a positive experience in this comprehensive facility as they continue to improve their health."

In addition to Cardiac Rehabilitation, CMMC offers a variety of cardiac services including routine EKGs, 24-hour holter monitoring, peripheral vascular studies, 2D Echo with Doppler & Color Flow, 64-Slice CT, stress echocardiograms, nuclear stress testing and transesophageal echocardiography, pacemaker insertions and cardioversions. In addition to these cardiac services, CMMC offers cardiac catheterization, percutaneous coronary interventions such as balloon angioplasty and/or coronary stents.

Cardiac Rehabilitation is open to patients who have had heart attacks, valve surgery, coronary artery bypass, congestive heart failure, pacemaker, or heart transplants or who have stable angina.

Photo caption: Fadi Chaaban, MD, Director of Cardiology, demonstrates the new Crossfit Machine.