Heart patients missing out on life-saving care after surgery

Two thirds of heart-attack survivors are not getting promised follow-up advice and treatment that could help them to live longer, a charity’s report says today. A national audit commissioned by the British Heart Foundation found that only 34 per cent of 83,500 heart attack victims took part in a cardiac rehabilitation programme after coming out of hospital.

The Government pledged to offer it to 85 per cent of heart patients by 2002 but seven years on, the audit for England, Wales and Northern Ireland, found that overall only 38 per cent of heart patients attended cardiac rehabilitation. The figure was only 30 per cent of those who underwent an angioplasty and 68 per cent for those who had heart bypass surgery.

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