Initial Efficacy of a Cardiac Rehabilitation Transition Program: Cardiac TRUST

Publication Title

Journal of Gerontological Nursing

Publication Date


Document Type





rehabilitation, cardiac trust, heart diseases


Medicine and Health Sciences | Public Health


The purpose of this pilot study was to test the initial efficacy, feasibility, and safety of a specially designed postacute care transitional rehabilitation intervention for cardiac patients. Cardiac Transitional Rehabilitation Using Self-Management Techniques (Cardiac TRUST) is a family-focused intervention that includes progressive low-intensity walking and education in self-management skills to facilitate recovery following a cardiac event. Using a randomized two-group design, exercise self-efficacy, steps walked, and participation in an outpatient cardiac rehabilitation (CR) program were compared in a sample of 38 older adults (17 Cardiac TRUST, 21 usual care). At discharge from postacute care, the intervention group trended toward higher levels of self-efficacy for exercise outcomes than the usual care group. During the 6 weeks following discharge, the intervention group had greater attendance in outpatient CR and a trend toward more steps walked during the first week. The feasibility of the intervention was better for the home health care participants than for those in the skilled nursing facility. The provision of CR during postacute care has the potential to bridge the gap in transitional services from hospitalization to outpatient CR for these patients at high risk for future cardiac events. Further evidence of the efficacy of Cardiac TRUST is warranted.