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Vol. 22. Issue 5.
Pages 400-407 (01 September 2018)
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Vol. 22. Issue 5.
Pages 400-407 (01 September 2018)
Original Research
DOI: 10.1016/j.bjpt.2018.03.005
Availability and characteristics of cardiac rehabilitation programs in one Brazilian state: a cross-sectional study
Thaianne Cavalcante Sérvioa, Gabriela Lima de Melo Ghisib, Lilian Pinto da Silvac, Luciana Duarte Novais Silvad, Marcia Maria Oliveira Limae, Danielle Aparecida Gomes Pereiraa, Sherry L. Graceb,f, Raquel Rodrigues Brittoa,
Corresponding author

Corresponding author at: Alameda da Aurora, 63, Pasárgada, CEP: 34009-568 Nova Lima, MG, Brazil.
a Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (UFMG), Departamento de Fisioterapia, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil
b Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation Program, Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, University Health Network, Toronto, Canada
c Universidade Federal de Juiz de Fora (UFJF), Faculdade de Fisioterapia, Juiz de Fora, MG, Brazil
d Universidade Federal do Triângulo Mineiro (UFTM), Departamento de Fisioterapia Aplicada, Uberaba, MG, Brazil
e Universidade Federal do Vale do Jequitinhonha e Mucuri (UFVJM), Departamento de Fisioterapia, Diamantina, MG, Brazil
f School of Kinesiology and Health Science, Toronto, Canada

  • Cardiac rehabilitation is not widely available and is underutilized, especially in low and middle-income countries.

  • Only forty-one cardiac rehabilitation programs were identified and most of them where privately-funded.

  • All core components of cardiac rehabilitation are not offered.

  • All programs had a physical therapist on staff.

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Tables (3)
Table 1. Characteristics of physical training performed in Cardiac Rehabilitation (CR) Programs in Minas Gerais by CR phase and type of funding (total n=9 public and 10 private).
Table 2. Characteristics of cardiac rehabilitation programs in the State of Minas Gerais by type of funding (public or private) (n=19).
Table 3. Components offered in cardiac rehabilitation programs by funding source (n=19).
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Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) is a recommended model of care for cardiovascular diseases; however, is not widely available and is underutilized, especially in low- and middle-income countries.


To identify the CR programs available in one Brazilian state (Minas Gerais; MG) and describe their characteristics by funding type.


In this multi-center descriptive study, CR programs were identified in four MG regions and 41 CR coordinators were sent a survey to report the characteristics of their programs, including CR components described in guidelines and barriers to patients’ participation. Descriptive and comparative analysis between public and private programs were carried out.


Forty-one CR programs were identified, only 21.9% public. Nineteen completed the survey. The majority of CR programs offered initial assessment and physical training. Components of comprehensive CR programs that were rarely offered included treatment of tobacco dependence, psychological support and lipid control. Physical therapists were present in all CR programs. The six-minute walk test was used in most programs to assess functional capacity. Programs were located intra-hospital only in public hospitals. Phase 2 (initial outpatient) and phase 4 (maintenance) were offered significantly more in private programs when compared to public ones. The main barrier for CR participation was the lack of referral.


The availability of CR programs in MG state is low, especially public programs. Most programs do not offer all core components of CR.

Cardiovascular diseases
Cardiac rehabilitation
Health services accessibility


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