What is the secret sauce to improving Cardiac Rehabilitation participation and outcomes?

“Give people what they want, or what they need, and they’re more likely to adhere to the program and get the results they need.” — Cardihab CEO Helen Souris

Cardihab CEO Helen Souris recently spoke to Talking Health Tech about all things Cardiac Rehabilitation (CR) and the significant impact it could have on reducing the burden of Cardiovascular Disease on the healthcare system—if only people could get access to a program that would work for their lifestyle.

Cardiovascular Disease costs Australia around a billion dollars every month¹, with over 1.1 million hospitalisations being the main contributor to this cost. Many of these readmissions would be avoidable and would save the country millions² if patients had access to high-quality, evidence-based cardiac rehabilitation which is recognised to improve outcomes.³

Programs such as the digital cardiac rehabilitation program developed and provided by Cardihab allow those patients who—for a broad range of reasons cannot participate in face-to-face programs—the flexibility to participate in a clinically validated and clinician-run program that is individualised to their needs and available on demand at a time and place that suits them is the key.

Currently up to 80%³ of patients who should be participating in CR do not due to reasons including a lack of referral, waitlist bottleneck, distance, travel restrictions, time constraints, social and cultural barriers - the list goes on. These and many other barriers could be overcome with a high-quality digital solution, still delivered by a clinician but available on demand at a time and place that suits them.

While there is recognition that digital is not going to be the solution for all, it's a modality that many patients want and need. Helen highlights that more work needs to be done to ensure it is ingrained and embedded into the way that healthcare is delivered, not perceived as an extra or beyond what usual care is considered to be. Through this shift in delivery mindset statistics can be influenced significantly, and numbers like 80% non-participation rates could be changed.

So the secret sauce to improving CR participation and outcomes we believe is providing options of modalities that fit with the needs of the patient, and this is something Cardihab is working to help deliver.

To learn more about Cardihab or to book a demo or meeting with the Business Development team click here.


  1. Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute. No second chances: controlling risk in cardiovascular disease. Melbourne, Australia: Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute; 2018. https://baker.edu.au/-/media/documents/impact/baker-institute_no-second-chances.pdf
  2. Heart Foundation, Data and Evaluation Unit. Unpublished report 2015 via Australian Cardiovascular Health and Rehabilitation Association
  3. Home-Based Cardiac Rehabilitation: A Scientific Statement From the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation, the American Heart Association, and the American College of Cardiology Randal J. Thomas, Alexis L. Beatty, Theresa M. Beckie, LaPrincess C. Brewer, Todd M. Brown, Daniel E. Forman, Barry A. Franklin, Steven J. Keteyian, Dalane W. Kitzman, Judith G. Regensteiner, Bonnie K. Sanderson and Mary A. Whooley

A partnership making a difference to the lives of those with Atrial Fibrillation

We are proud to announce our partnership with the Atrial Fibrillation Institute and Queensland Cardiovascular Group aimed a improving health outcomes for patients with Atrial Fibrillation.   

A heart condition which affects approximately 500,000 Australians, Atrial Fibrillation (AF) causes an irregular and often abnormally fast heart rate.  AF greatly increases the risk of stroke, so early diagnosis and treatment is crucial in changing health outcomes.

The partnership aims to deliver a technology based solution for this complex heart condition which will provide a much needed care pathway for patients while also supporting the clinicians and physicians treating them.

We look forward to working with the innovative team at the Atrial Fibrillation Institute to build solutions that address the needs of  those living with AF.

LiSTNR podcast series ‘Beyond the Medicine Cabinet’ talks Cardiac Rehabilitation

Listnr podcast ‘Beyond the Medicine Cabinet’ host Zoë Callister-Hakewill recently spoke with  a Cardiac Rehabilitation Clinician and a patient based in Tasmania who are being helped by Cardihab’s digital cardiac rehabilitation solution. 


Clinic Nurse Consultant Cardiac Health and Rehab of Launceston General Hospital John Aitken explains that despite Cardiovascular Disease being Australia's biggest killer, the rates of attendance of Cardiac Rehabilitation in Australia are very low at around 20%.

Paul, a Cardiovascular Disease patient was referred by John to Cardihab's digital cardiac rehabilitation program after his second cardiac event, after a 200 day waitlist for a traditional program was considered too long.

Throughout the podcast Paul discusses the benefits of being able to do the program from home and the flexibility of managing program requirements around work/family commitments, as well as having the ability to use the app to intuitively keep track of medications, vital stats, and access educational content and resources as and when required, as being the key benefits to the digital program.  

Cardihab CEO Helen Souris speaks about the rapidly changing healthcare landscape and the impact of program's like Cardihab's Cardiac Rehabilitation program.

She highlights that while the modern approach to treating events and procedures associated with Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) means a patient can be in and out of hospital within days, the recovery pathways are decades outdated and in need of reform. 

Ms Souris says the goal of Cardihab's digital cardiac rehabilitation program is to provide choice. "If someone really wants to participate in face-to-face rehab then give them that opportunity as they're going to get the most out of that, but for people still working or with family commitments give them the option to do a digital program and complete it from home in a way that fits into their life and is more likely to get outcomes." 

The vision is that digital cardiac rehabilitation will liberate the system from the current waitlist bottleneck, and give people access to the care they need when and where they need it.