Relatives of heart patients in rehabilitation often perceive their situation as stressful. Home-based rehabilitation through telemedicine changes their situation. This study seeks insight from relatives’ perception of heart patients’ participation in telemonitored cardiac rehabilitation (TCR). The study was based on semi-structured interviews with three relatives. We found that the relatives perceived TCR as an integrated part of everyday life. If the patient’s lifestyle was unhealthy, or exercise-based rehabilitation needed to be adjusted, the relatives had confidence in the monitoring equipment and feedback from the nurse. This supported them in continuing their normal routines. Additionally, the three relatives took part in the patients’ rehabilitation, because they found it important. The downside was, nevertheless, the relatives’ concern about their future role as responsible for their partners’ maintenance of a heart-friendly lifestyle. However, the relatives expressed their partners’ participation in TCR as predominantly positive.

Keywords: cardiac rehabilitation, heart patients, interviews, relatives, telemedicine