Research Output
A physical activity referral program improves risk factors in those who have completed cardiac rehabilitation.
  Background: On completion of cardiac rehabilitation (CR), participants may be referred to community-based physical activity programs. There is limited data to determine additional benefits of these programs supplemental to CR.

Methods: Using longitudinal referral data from the 24-week Northumberland Exercise Referral Scheme (2009-2015), we examined uptake, 12-week adherence and 24-week completion. Pre and post-program self-reported physical activity levels, body mass index and waist circumference were explored via repeated measures analyses. Multivariate analysis assessed whether demographic/personal factors predicted uptake and completion.

Results: Of 11,233 referrals made by health care professionals, 830 (7.4%) were CR completers. For this group, uptake was 85.2% (n = 707). Referrals were predominantly male (70.8%). Mean age was 65.2 (SD10.37) years. Of those who started, 77.4% (n = 547) were 12-week adherers and 66.5% (n = 470) were 24-week completers. Physical activity levels increased (baseline = 30.6% active, final = 44.5% active; p < 0.001). There were decreases in body mass index (baseline = 28.2 (SD4.8) kg/m2, final = 27.9 (SD4.5) kg/m2; p < 0.05) and waist circumference (baseline = 100.5 (SD12.8) cm, final = 99.1 (SD12.5) cm; p < 0.001). Using regression minimally increased ability to predict uptake and completion. Being aged 65–74 years was positively associated with uptake (OR 4.030; 95% CI 2.234-7.271; p < 0.001). Being aged 65-74 (OR 2.132; 95% CI 1.268-3.387; p < 0.05) and not smoking (OR 2.801; 95% CI 1.073-7.271; p < 0.05) were positively associated with completion, while being female (OR 0.663; 95% CI 0.461-0.953; p < 0.05) was negatively associated.

Conclusion: A community-based activity program led to significant positive changes in cardiovascular risk factors beyond those achieved on CR completion. Research is required to better understand influences on uptake and adherence.

  • Type:

    Conference Paper

  • Date:

    14 August 2017

  • Publication Status:


  • Publisher

    Elsevier BV

  • DOI:


  • Cross Ref:


  • ISSN:


  • Library of Congress:

    R1 Medicine (General)

  • Dewey Decimal Classification:

    616.2 Respiratory diseases

  • Funders:

    Durham University


Hanson, C., Neubeck, L., & Dodd-Reynolds, C. (2017). A physical activity referral program improves risk factors in those who have completed cardiac rehabilitation. Heart, Lung and Circulation, 26(Supplement 2), S342-S343.



Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine, Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine,

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