VHS Site Map



Cardiac Rehabilitation

Since February 2002, the outpatient cardiac rehabilitation program has assisted patients recovering from heart attacks, angioplasty, heart surgery, and those at high risk for cardiac disease.  It is the goal of our staff to work with the patient in achieving his or her highest level of physical function.

Each patient is thoroughly evaluated and placed on an individualized prescription program for exercise that is designed to strengthen the heart.

In June of 2012, a new state-of-the-art monitoring system was installed ensuring the patients’ vital signs are continually being assessed as the exercise equipment is being used. Proper nutrition and understanding the need for healthy eating habits are essential for cardiac health. Our dietitian meets with patients and their family members as requested to provide information, answer questions and discuss concerns.

Our staff works with each patient and his family toward achieving a healthy lifestyle. The Community Resource Room houses many pamphlets and materials to aid in the education of successful cardiac rehabilitation.

Join our HEARTY HEARTS club!

The Hearty Hearts Club was formed in 2002 to allow cardiac rehab “graduates” an opportunity to continue seeing each other.  The club meets monthly at Valley Health Services for lunch, an educational program and socialization. Group members are current and former cardiac rehab patients and their spouses. 

What does the Cardiac Rehabilitation Program entail?
After a review of the patient's health history and a complete patient assessment, patients are placed on a supervised exercise routine. Patients come to Valley Health Services three times per week for one-hour exercise sessions for ten to twelve weeks. A heart monitor worn during the sessions enables staff to closely watch each patient's tolerance of physical activity.

How do I enroll?
A physician's referral is necessary to begin the cardiac rehabilitation program. However, if a patient has had a cardiac event within the last 6 months to a year, he/she can call VHS at (315) 866-3330, ext. 2236 and we can notify his/her physician’s office of his/her interest in cardiac rehab.

Does insurance cover the cost?
Valley Health Services accepts most major health insurance plans that cover the cost of cardiac rehabilitation, including Medicare. There may be a co-pay requirement.

Who can answer my other questions about cardiac rehabilitation?
For more information or to discuss further concerns, please contact the Valley Health Services Department of Rehabilitation at (315) 866-3330, ext. 2236.

Meet Marcia Thomas-Bruce, RN, BSN
Marcia is the program's cardiac rehabilitation nurse manager and has worked as an RN for nine years
. Her responsibilities include evaluating, monitoring and overseeing patients who have experienced any type of cardiac event.  The goal of the program is to instill confidence, dispel fears and build endurance within limits set by the physician.  Nutritional management and education also play an intricate role in the rehabilitation process. The cardiac rehabilitation program is generously supported by:

BlueCross BlueShield of Utica-Watertown 
The Valley Health Services cardiac rehabilitation program received a BCBSUW Community Health Award.

The Community Foundation of Herkimer & Oneida Counties 
The Foundation provided funding for the state-of-the-art telemetry and computer monitoring equipment and cardiac exercise equipment.

The Slocum-Dickson Foundation 
Educational resources for the program were purchased with the support of the Foundation.

Excellence in Caring



Contact Information: (315) 866-3330 x2223