Transition to Home-Based Treatment Plans for Center-Based Cardiac, Pulmonary, and Vascular Rehabilitation during COVID-19

R I Med J (2013). 2020 Nov 2;103(9):30-33.


Background: Traditional rehabilitation services, whether they are cardiac, pulmonary, or vascular, consist of 6-36 center-based, supervised sessions; however, due to COVID-19, in-person visits were suspended. This study sought to implement a transitional home-based treatment plan (HBTP) to patients.

Method: Patients enrolled in a rehabilitation service at the Miriam Hospital during the time of temporary closure were provided with a HBTP that was individualized to their needs and multi-disciplinary in nature. Patients were called weekly for continual guidance and support.

Results: Of the 129 patients that received a HBTP, 115 (89%) participated in follow-up correspondence (63±12 years, 83% white, 66% male, 81% enrolled in cardiac rehab). Nearly 70% of patients continued to participate in regular exercise and upon re-opening, 69 (60%) of patients returned to center-based care. Psychosocial factors appeared to inhibit treatment adherence.

Conclusions: Patients are receptive to an HBTP and subsequent follow-up throughout temporary closure of rehabilitation services.

Keywords: COVID-19; home-based cardiac rehabilitation; pulmonary rehab; vascular rehab.

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Aged
  • Betacoronavirus
  • COVID-19
  • Cardiac Rehabilitation / methods*
  • Coronavirus Infections*
  • Exercise Therapy / methods*
  • Exercise Therapy / organization & administration
  • Female
  • Heart Diseases / rehabilitation*
  • Home Care Services / organization & administration
  • Humans
  • Lung Diseases / rehabilitation*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nutrition Therapy / methods
  • Pandemics*
  • Pneumonia, Viral*
  • Quality Improvement
  • Relaxation Therapy / methods
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Vascular Diseases / rehabilitation*