Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of premature death (30% of all deaths) and disability in Europe and worldwide (WHO), costing the EU economy almost €196 billion a year. With changing demographics and deteriorating lifestyle this situation will worsen considerably, which is neither economically or socially sustainable. Effective Cardiac Rehabilitation (CR) can significantly improve mortality and morbidity rates, leading to longer independent living and a reduced use of health care resources. However, uptake of traditional community-based long-term (phase III) CR is very low across member states (approx. 11%) and is further diminished by low subsequent adherence rates. Key reasons for this include: severe lack of programmes, travel time, scheduling issues, lack of peer mentoring, and low self-efficacy associated with poor exercise technique and perceived poor ‘body image’ (not wanting to exercise with large groups of ‘strangers’).
PATHway will provide individualized rehabilitation programs that use regular, socially inclusive exercise sessions as the basis upon which to provide a personalized comprehensive lifestyle intervention program (exercise/physical activity (PA), smoking, diet, stress management, alcohol use, medication compliance) to enable patients to both better understand and deal with their own condition and to lead a healthier lifestyle in general. This will be made possible by the provision of an internet-enabled sensor-based home exercise platform that allows remote participation in CR exercise programs at any time, by a small number of patients from the comfort of their own living room.