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Meeting people where they are: Cherokee Medical Center opens new cardiac rehab service

Meeting people where they are: Cherokee Medical Center opens new cardiac rehab service

By Staff reports on February 27, 2024

Specialized, hands-on cardiac rehabilitation is now closer to home for Cherokee County residents.

The new Cardiac Rehabilitation Program at Cherokee Medical Center is helping heart patients make healthy lifestyle changes and improve their lives.

Part of Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System’s cardiovascular and pulmonary rehab program, the new rehab center includes state-of-the-art exercise equipment, nurses and staff who work one-on-one with patients for exercise therapy, counseling with dietitians, individualized treatment plans and cardiac education.

Stacie Snyder, Spartanburg Regional’s cardiac rehabilitation program manager, said adding cardiac rehab services at Cherokee Medical Center has been one way to remove barriers to better health and help patients access care close to home.

“We knew the need was here,” she said. “There are lots of reasons people may not attend a program after a referral. By adding this, we’re putting resources closest to people to reduce those barriers.”

Cherokee Medical Center held a community event Feb. 26 to celebrate the grand opening of the new cardiac rehabilitation center.

“Community members and staff are our greatest educators,” Snyder said. “I want people to come and see and really understand what we do and what we have.”

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. One person dies every 33 seconds in the U.S. from cardiovascular disease.

“Heart disease is the number one problem in America, and it isn’t going away,” she said. “Bringing this right here to the community is really a key to success for the health of this community.”

Rather than creating unattainable goals for each patient, Snyder said the goal is to “meet people where they are.”

“As we move our bodies more and eat better, we start to see things like weight loss and blood pressure control, and we benefit from those changes over time,” Snyder said.

Snyder said patients also need to be mindful of things like sleep patterns and ways to manage stress, as both can impact heart health. Cardiac rehab staff members must work with patients at their own pace while also being honest about their health and what’s harming them.

“Honesty is the best policy. We have to be honest about what’s putting you at risk,” Snyder said. “We have to be honest with our patients and lead them in the right direction.”

Coming to the cardiac rehab program for the first time can often feel daunting for a patient, but associates are willing and ready to accept them with open arms.

“Just get yourself through the door,” Snyder said. “Half of the battle is just trust and confidence.”

For more information about Spartanburg Regional's cardiac rehabilitation services, visit