Cardiac rehabilitation


Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) is multidisciplinary and made up of senior cardiac nurses and a senior physiotherapist or fitness instructors, who work closely with consultant cardiologists. We also have access to psychology services, dietitians and stop smoking services.

This is a service designed to help you get back to leading as full a life as possible after what's called a 'heart event'. This could mean you've had a heart attack, heart surgery or a cardiac procedure. Patients are carefully assessed and a management plan put in place to help you with your condition and to optimise your quality of life, through medication and changes in lifestyle.

More on what we do

Following your diagnosis, you will be reviewed by a member of the CR team in hospital. They will ensure you understand your diagnosis and treatment plan and explain what happens next. Your interview will address any lifestyle modifications and answer any questions you may have. Following discharge you will be referred to the community CR services who are also experienced cardiac nurses, and they will continue to support and guide your recovery and return to ‘normal’.

An exercise programme suited to your needs will be offered at an appropriate time to your event recovery. This could be based in a gym or through an online platform. We are on hand to boost your fitness and confidence after what is often a deeply traumatic time. We will also monitor your medication and make recommendations and/or adjustments to suit your need and condition. Our service is run using guidelines from NICE and the British Association for Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation (BACPR).

The CR team are there to support and guide you in your recovery. You will have regular reviews with the team and are invited to call at any time with any concerns you may have. Along with one to one assessments we also run education sessions on topics such as medications, diet, stress, smoking cessation and how the heart works.

Each exercise session is taken at your own pace and you'll be closely monitored throughout. If you chose an online platform you will have at least weekly contact with the CR team for advice and support. If neither of these options suit you we can offer walking programmes or DVDs from the British Heart Foundation (BHF).

Our team

Lead Cardiologist for CR

  • Dr M Gandhi

Lead Nurse Specialist for CR

  • Rebecca Chawner

Hospital-based CR Nurse Specialists

  • Georgina Rands
  • Michelle Sowden
  • Luke Knight

Community-based CR Nurse Specialists

  • Emma Russell
  • Portia Tushingham-Jones
  • Alison Brandon
  • Fiona Boatwright

Where to find us

RD&E Wonford, Barrack Rd, Exeter EX2 5DW

The hospital team are located in room Q117. They see patients before discharge, but also run an exercise class in the physiotherapy department at Heavitree Hospital


Newcourt House, Old Rydon Lane, Exeter EX2 5DW

The community team are based at Newcourt House, and the community nurses cover all of East Devon and run exercise classes in various community locations

Contact us

The Hospital Cardiac Rehab Team is on 01392 403973

The Community Cardiac Rehab Team is on 01392 356159

Patient leaflets and documents


Following discharge from hospital you will be referred to the community CR service. The nurses offer clinics is various locations in Devon. When you are contacted by telephone you will be offered an appointment location suitable for you. Likewise exercise programmes take place in various locations as well as online.

Supporting you

We work closely with the team at TALKWORKS who are available for self-referral should you experience any emotional difficulties following your event. TALKWORKS can be contacted on 0300 555 3344 or


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