Cardiac Rehabilitation Is Essential in the COVID-19 Era: DELIVERING UNINTERRUPTED HEART CARE BASED ON THE CLEVELAND CLINIC EXPERIENCE.
Journal of cardiopulmonary rehabilitation and prevention. 2021;(2):88-92
The unprecedented nature of the COVID-19 pandemic has challenged how and whether patients with heart disease are able to safely access center-based exercise training and cardiac rehabilitation (CR). This commentary provides an experience-based overview of how one health system quickly developed and applied inclusive policies to allow patients to have safe and effective access to exercise-based CR.
Delphi consensus recommendations on how to provide cardiovascular rehabilitation in the COVID-19 era.
European journal of preventive cardiology. 2021;(5):541-557
This Delphi consensus by 28 experts from the European Association of Preventive Cardiology (EAPC) provides initial recommendations on how cardiovascular rehabilitation (CR) facilities should modulate their activities in view of the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. A total number of 150 statements were selected and graded by Likert scale [from -5 (strongly disagree) to +5 (strongly agree)], starting from six open-ended questions on (i) referral criteria, (ii) optimal timing and setting, (iii) core components, (iv) structure-based metrics, (v) process-based metrics, and (vi) quality indicators. Consensus was reached on 58 (39%) statements, 48 'for' and 10 'against' respectively, mainly in the field of referral, core components, and structure of CR activities, in a comprehensive way suitable for managing cardiac COVID-19 patients. Panelists oriented consensus towards maintaining usual activities on traditional patient groups referred to CR, without significant downgrading of intervention in case of COVID-19 as a comorbidity. Moreover, it has been suggested to consider COVID-19 patients as a referral group to CR per se when the viral disease is complicated by acute cardiovascular (CV) events; in these patients, the potential development of COVID-related CV sequelae, as well as of pulmonary arterial hypertension, needs to be focused. This framework might be used to orient organization and operational of CR programmes during the COVID-19 crisis.
Mobile Technologies to Promote Physical Activity during Cardiac Rehabilitation: A Scoping Review.
Sensors (Basel, Switzerland). 2020;(1)
Promoting regular physical activity (PA) and improving exercise capacity are the primary goals of cardiac rehabilitation (CR). Mobile technologies (mTechs) like smartphones, smartwatches, and fitness trackers might help patients in reaching these goals. This review aimed to scope current scientific literature on mTechs in CR to assess the impact on patients' exercise capacity and to identify gaps and future directions for research. PubMed, CENTRAL, and CDSR were systematically searched for randomized controlled trials (RCTs). These RCTs had to utilize mTechs to objectively monitor and promote PA of patients during or following CR, aim at improvements in exercise capacity, and be published between December 2014 and December 2019. A total of 964 publications were identified, and 13 studies met all inclusion criteria. Home-based CR with mTechs vs. outpatient CR without mTechs and outpatient CR with mTechs vs. outpatient CR without mTechs did not lead to statistically significant differences in exercise capacity. In contrast, outpatient CR followed by home-based CR with mTechs led to significant improvement in exercise capacity as compared to outpatient CR without further formal CR. Supplying patients with mTechs may improve exercise capacity. To ensure that usage of and compliance with mTechs is optimal, a concentrated effort of CR staff has to be achieved. The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an unprecedented lack of patient support while away from institutional CR. Even though mTechs lend themselves as suitable assistants, evidence is lacking that they can fill this gap.
Behavior Change Techniques in Physical Activity eHealth Interventions for People With Cardiovascular Disease: Systematic Review.
Journal of medical Internet research. 2017;(8):e281
BACKGROUND Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of premature death and disability in Europe, accounting for 4 million deaths per year and costing the European Union economy almost €196 billion annually. There is strong evidence to suggest that exercise-based secondary rehabilitation programs can decrease the mortality risk and improve health among patients with CVD. Theory-informed use of behavior change techniques (BCTs) is important in the design of cardiac rehabilitation programs aimed at changing cardiovascular risk factors. Electronic health (eHealth) is the use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) for health. This emerging area of health care has the ability to enhance self-management of chronic disease by making health care more accessible, affordable, and available to the public. However, evidence-based information on the use of BCTs in eHealth interventions is limited, and particularly so, for individuals living with CVD. OBJECTIVE The aim of this systematic review was to assess the application of BCTs in eHealth interventions designed to increase physical activity (PA) in CVD populations. METHODS A total of 7 electronic databases, including EBSCOhost (MEDLINE, PsycINFO, Academic Search Complete, SPORTDiscus with Full Text, and CINAHL Complete), Scopus, and Web of Science (Core Collection) were searched. Two authors independently reviewed references using the software package Covidence (Veritas Health Innovation). The reviewers met to resolve any discrepancies, with a third independent reviewer acting as an arbitrator when required. Following this, data were extracted from the papers that met the inclusion criteria. Bias assessment of the studies was carried out using the Cochrane Collaboration's tool for assessing the risk of bias within Covidence; this was followed by a narrative synthesis. RESULTS Out of the 987 studies that were identified, 14 were included in the review. An additional 9 studies were added following a hand search of review paper references. The average number of BCTs used across the 23 studies was 7.2 (range 1-19). The top three most frequently used BCTs included information about health consequences (78%, 18/23), goal setting (behavior; 74%, 17/23), and joint third, self-monitoring of behavior and social support (practical) were included in 11 studies (48%, 11/23) each. CONCLUSIONS This systematic review is the first to investigate the use of BCTs in PA eHealth interventions specifically designed for people with CVD. This research will have clear implications for health care policy and research by outlining the BCTs used in eHealth interventions for chronic illnesses, in particular CVD, thereby providing clear foundations for further research and developments in the area.