What we do

Cardiac rehabilitation helps you recover from a heart attack or after heart surgery, such as a stent, heart bypass or valve operation. A team of health professionals will support you to reach any goals you have. This could include:

  • eating healthier
  • becoming more active
  • knowing your medications
  • managing stress

Attending exercise sessions can help to improve your fitness and strength and get you back to work and family life.

Programs run for up to 6 weeks and there is no cost to attend cardiac rehabilitation offered through Queensland Health.

Who can access this service?

Cardiac rehabilitation is available to people who have a recent diagnosis of:

  • Heart attack (myocardial infarction)
  • Coronary angioplasty with stent
  • Open heart surgery (such as a bypass or valve replacement)
  • Heart failure
  • An implantable device (such as a pacemaker)

Patients with stable angina or other heart conditions may be able to attend if approved by their cardiologist or doctor.

Most people are referred to cardiac rehabilitation directly after a hospital stay. If you think you would benefit from attending, please discuss with your GP or health provider to get a referral.

Heart failure

If you have heart failure and have recently been in hospital, or are having difficulty managing your symptoms, the Heart Failure Service at Cairns Hospital can support you with telephone calls, telehealth and/or face-to-face appointments, as well as group exercise and education sessions. You must have a cardiologist to access this service.

How it works

After receiving your referral, we will contact you to book an appointment at your local hospital or community health centre. You will see a nurse to discuss your condition, treatment, medications, and recovery goals. We will check any healing wounds, your blood pressure, weight and other measures. The physiotherapist, exercise physiologist, or exercise specialist will also talk to you about exercise and complete walking and balance tests. You will also do a survey to measure your mood and quality of life.

You can then complete your exercise sessions at your local cardiac rehabilitation gym, or online from home using telerehabilitation. At the end of the program, you will attend a final appointment to retake your health measurements, and to talk about any ongoing problems or concerns you have.



Cardiac rehabilitation is available online. This provides more options for people who can't attend in-person groups because of distance, family and work commitments.

To do your sessions from home you will need a computer, tablet or phone with a camera and microphone. You will also need enough internet or mobile phone reception to make a video call. In some cases, you may be able to go into your local health centre to use the telehealth equipment to complete your sessions. A nurse and physiotherapist will supervise online sessions to ensure your safety.

For more information phone 07 4226 4549 or email FN_Telerehabilitation@health.qld.gov.au.

Further information

For more information regarding cardiac rehabilitation please visit Heart Foundation Australia.

Last updated: June 2024