Follow Your Heart
Personalized post-op care for cardiac patients
Follow Your Heart is a program that is exclusive to the cardiac surgery departments of the Northwell Health System, which includes The Heart Institute. This unique program allows our caring team to follow-up with a cardiac patient via phone and in-home evaluations in the days and weeks following discharge from The Heart Institute.
Follow Your Heart is conducted by our team of cardiothoracic PAs who are personally selected and trained by our cardiothoracic surgeons. Working closely together, the PAs act as an extension of the cardiothoracic surgical team and share the same vision for exceptional patient care, both in-hospital and at home. These personalized, follow-up evaluations ensure patients continue to receive the highest quality care even after they leave the hospital setting. It is offered at no cost to the patient.
Since its inception, Follow Your Heart has helped increase patient satisfaction and decrease readmission rates from home by more than 50% at The Heart Institute alone.
Day one at home – The first day after discharge the patient is called by a cardiothoracic PA to see how he or she is feeling and to see if any problems have occurred with their medications. The PA will also arrange to see the patient at home within 24 to 72 hours from the time of the phone call.
1st home visit by cardiothoracic PA — The examination you receive at home will be similar to a regular office visit and typically lasts about 20 to 45 minutes. In addition to checking the patient’s overall health and wellbeing, all medications will be reviewed and adjusted, if necessary, and instructions for post-operative care will be reinforced. The second visit is then scheduled for 48 to 96 hours after this appointment, depending on clinical findings and the patient’s understanding of post-op instructions.
2nd home visit by cardiothoracic PA — The second visit is very similar to the first and allows the cardiothoracic PA to ensure that you are healing properly and on the road to recovery. At this time, the patient will be instructed to make an appointment at their cardiothoracic surgeon’s office for the following week.
The patient will then be seen one or two more times at the surgeon’s office, depending on the patient’s specific needs.
For questions or information on our Follow Your Heart program, please contact:
Robert F. Carlucci, MPAS, PA-C, FAPACVS, DFAAPA
Administrative Director, Cardiothoracic Surgery
Director of Physician Assistant Services, General Surgery
office: (718) 226-6210