Palisades Medical Center Cardiovascular Rehabilitation Program Earns National Certification

Palisades Medical Center is proud to announce the certification of its Cardiovascular Rehabilitation Program by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (AACVPR). Palisades Medical Center was recognized for its commitment to improving the quality of life by enhancing standards of care.

Cardiovascular and pulmonary rehabilitation programs are designed to help people with cardiovascular problems (e.g. heart attacks, coronary artery bypass graft surgery, stent insertion, angioplasty and angina) and pulmonary problems (e.g. chronic obstructive pulmonary disease — COPD, respiratory symptoms, etc.) recover faster and improve their quality of life. Both programs include exercise, education, counseling and support for patients and their families.

In the photo...

(left to right) Palisades Medical Center's Peggy Seisz, Dawn Santos and Harry Nati monitor Catherine Galvin of North Bergen as she exercises at Palisades Medical Center's Cardiovascular/Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program.

Palisades Medical Center's Cardiovascular Rehabilitation Program participated in the one year application process which requires extensive documentation of the program's practices. The AACVPR Program Certification is the only peer-reviewed accreditation process designed to review individual programs for adherence to standards and guidelines developed and published by the AACVPR and other professional societies. Each program is reviewed by the AACVPR National Certification Committee and certification is awarded by the AACVPR Board of Directors. Certified AACVPR programs are recognized as leaders in the field of cardiovascular and pulmonary rehabilitation because they offer the most advanced practices available. AACVPR Program Certification is valid for three years.

This national certification came after the recent expansion of Palisades Medical Center's Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation Programs to provide additional treatment, exercise and counseling services for patients recovering from heart-related illnesses and those considered "high risk" due to family history, hypertension, diabetes, or high cholesterol. During the last ten years, Palisades has experienced a 25% increase in patients needing these specialty care services.

"Whether you are recuperating from surgery, need to improve your heart's functioning, or plan to reduce your risk factors for cardiovascular disease, we now have programs designed to move you in the right direction toward wellness," said Dawn Santos, Registered Nurse in Cardiac/Pulmonary Rehabilitation at Palisades Medical Center. "Our recent expansion provides our patients with the latest resources in diagnostic imaging, conservative and innovative treatment options, progressive medicine and hands on care. This means that local residents will no longer need to travel out of immediate area to benefit from these world class services."

According to Santos, patients work out three days a week on exercise equipment and free weights. A cardiac care nurse closely monitors each person's activity and progress, and patients learn ways to manage stress and make diet and lifestyle changes to improve their overall health. Patients also now benefit from Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring (ABMP), which provides valuable diagnostic information that in-clinic and home blood pressure monitoring systems are incapable of measuring including:

  • Blood pressure variability and a more accurate estimation of true blood pressure
  • Overnight changes in blood pressure (dipper status)
  • Morning surges in blood pressure

For more information, please call (201) 295-4013.

About Palisades Medical Center

Palisades Medical Center is located in North Bergen, NJ, and serves a population of 400,000 in Hudson and Southern Bergen Counties. The non-profit Medical Center is features a 202-bed hospital and The Harborage, a 245-bed nursing home and rehabilitation center. Palisades is the largest employer in its service area with more than 1,300 employees and it has an annual operating budget of approximately $150 million. The State of New Jersey's annual healthcare report card ranked Palisades as one of the top hospitals in the state and #1 in Hudson County. Palisades was also one of only two hospitals in New Jersey to receive a perfect 100% score in treating heart attack patients. The State's annual evaluation showed that The Harborage at Palisades has "Zero Deficiencies" for the third consecutive year. For more information, please call (201) 854-5000 or visit


Founded in 1985, the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation is a multidisciplinary organization dedicated to the mission of reducing morbidity, mortality and disability from cardiovascular and pulmonary disease through education, prevention, rehabilitation, research and disease management. Central to the core mission is improvement in quality of life for patients and their families.