A random sample of 25 cardiac rehabilitation programmes in England and Wales was surveyed by questionnaire. Using workload and resource data returned, costs were calculated per centre, per patient and per session. Sixteen (64%) of the centres returned full details. Annual staffing costs per cardiac rehabilitation centre were in the range 10,000 Pounds to 62,000 Pounds, with a mean of just under 33,0000 Pounds (median 32,000 Pounds). Mean cost per patient completing the rehabilitation programme was 370 Pounds (median 223 Pounds), and mean cost per patient per session was 47 Pounds (median 26 Pounds). There was substantial intercentre variation in costs. Cost per patient was closely related to patient throughput and hours of contact time. The costs of rehabilitation programmes in this survey exceed earlier estimates. To assess the implications for the cost-effectiveness of such programmes, reliable data on the effectiveness of such programmes are now required.