Cardiologists across the state and nation understand one of the most crucial steps to preventing heart disease is through a healthy diet and exercise.
With the launch of Hays County’s first dedicated rehabilitation and wellness center at Seton Medical Center Hays in Kyle, cardiologists and medical professionals alike welcome the opportunities the new facility will provide for patients.
Funded by more than 300 donors, the McCoy Wellness and Rehabilitation Center features four classrooms for private treatment, a kitchen for cooking classes, cardio room, gym, showers and locker rooms.
For Dr. Vamsi Krishna, medical director of the Cardiac Cath laboratory and cardiac rehab at SMCH, the facility is a crucial step in his vision for a healthier Hays County.
“(These facilities) are better than any drug we can give you … and the biggest thing I tell patients is by doing this we can reduce your medications,” Krishna said. “We don’t have anything like this in Hays County. Patients who complete the program can continue to come to the facility. We’re going beyond what a traditional rehab center is about and looking toward the future.”
Krishna said these rehabilitative programs can help reduce a patient’s symptoms while reducing the chance of death by around 30 percent. Additionally, the treatments can help reduce depression, increase compliance with medications and overall happiness.
More than 800,000 Americans died due to Cardiovascular disease in 2016.
Although the statistics are alarming, Krishna and his team feel these types of facilities can plant seeds for people to practice healther habits.
Cardiologists first identify what motivates patients in order to address how they can prevent cardiovascular disease. Then, the team at Seton Hays will tailor a program that fits the needs of the patient.
The facility will also include pulmonary rehabilitation, a program of education and exercise that helps manage patients with chronic respiratory diseases by increasing stamina and decreasing breathlessness.
After a hard workout, patients can participate in nutrition programs and cooking demos, so they can take recipes home with them, said Salim Street, manager of cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation services in Seton’s south market. In addition to exercise and nutrition, the facility will also help assist patients with mental health.
“This means access. Since we opened in 2009, we had a cardiac and pulmonary rehab program, but it was limited by space,” Street said. “This allows us to get patients in the door in a timely manner and get their therapy started so they can get back to their lives. I have to thank all of our donors and staff who made this a reality for Hays County.”