A Program of Great Renown

Lynice Anderson and the 2024 Dream Team. At the bottom of the image is the text "Renown Health"
  • May 10, 2024

We’ve shared several stories from cardiac rehabilitation programs that have recently transitioned to Pritikin; this week, we’re sharing the story of one of the first programs to adopt our intensive cardiac rehab (ICR) curriculum. Under the direction of Lynice Anderson, Renown Health has been offering Pritikin ICR to cardiac patients in Reno, NV since 2016.

 

Over the years, Lynice and her team have seen our offering evolve into what it is today. Of all the ICR facilities I get to work with across the Western United States, Renown holds a special place in my heart as it offered me my first introduction to Pritikin ICR. That’s right – I got my start with ICR as a Pritikin chef working for Lynice at Renown! As she prepares to retire later this month, I asked her to share her experience with the Pritikin program she established at Renown Health.

Pritikin Over Time

“Pritikin has been a terrific partner over the past 8 years as we share the vision and goals of providing the very best patient experience.”

Lynice Anderson and an old Dream Team at Renown Health ICRLynice’s 30+ year career in healthcare started in college, passing out meal trays in a local hospital. She spent several years in the diabetes, wellness, and prevention space before managing the launch of one of the region’s first Pritikin ICR programs. Since opening the program, she has “enjoyed witnessing and being a part of the evolution and growth of Pritikin”. Part of that evolution included the introduction of our new-and-improved patient videos, up-to-date workshops, and Patient Engagement Kit. The star of the Patient Engagement Kit is our Patient Guidebook which was designed to equip patients with the tools and knowledge needed for success, both during cardiac rehab and long after the program is complete, it includes:

  • Goal-Setting and Sustainability Tools
  • Weekly Meal Planner and Grocery List
  • Personalized Exercise Guide
  • 100+ Heart-Healthy Recipes...and more!

Lynice Anderson and the Dream Team at Renown Health ICR when Chris Wyatt was on the team! When I worked on the recipes in the Patient Guidebook, I did so with my former Renown Health patients and Cooking School attendees in mind. I saw first-hand how overwhelmed they were when first started attending my cooking classes – changing your eating habits is daunting! I would do my best to demonstrate the simplicity – and delicious flavors – of heart-healthy cooking. I loved it when a patient would come in and confidently proclaim that they wouldn’t like the recipe I would be cooking that day. It might take a while but, eventually, I’d cajole them to just give it a try. Seeing their shocked reactions when they realized that they actually liked the sample was priceless! The feedback we’ve received from the recipes in our Patient Guidebook seems to mirror that reaction. While I’m no longer presenting Cooking School workshops myself, I’m glad to hear that Renown patients are still enjoying my recipes on-site and at home.

The Renown ICR Experience

Every patient’s initial orientation visit to Renown’s Intensive Cardiac Rehab sets the stage for all subsequent visits. With that in mind, Lynice and her team make sure that from the start, patients feel supported, listened to, and involved in their rehabilitation plan. They do that by keeping the initial visit small between the patient, a cardiac nurse and cardiac exercise specialists who work together to build initial Individual Treatment Plans and Exercise Prescriptions.

During subsequent visits, patients participate in sessions where they learn how to apply the three Pritikin Pillars (Regular Exercise, Heart-Healthy Nutrition, and Healthy Mind-Set) to their lifestyles. The layout and set-up of the ICR space was designed to be very welcoming. I loved cooking in the Renown kitchen because it feels like a smaller version of a home kitchen! The space is comfortable and intimate; it almost felt as if my Cooking School patients were all guests in my home.

“ICR is successful purely because of the team.  Of course, each team member shines in their own unique way but it is the synergy that creates the magic.” -Lynice Anderson

Lynice Anderson during one of her last days at Renown Health as ICR DirectorLynice endearingly refers to the ICR staff as her dream team. She shared that she’s been lucky to work with three amazing dream teams since the inception of Renown’s ICR program. While it’s true that it takes a dynamic group of people to bring the Pritikin ICR curriculum to life, it takes someone special at the helm to inspire a group to bring their best into the office day after day. Having worked on Lynice’s dream team, I can attest to the passion she brings to everything she does! Her experience, knowledge, and enthusiasm made everyday on her dream team a joy!

Lynice Anderson and a former Renown Health ICR Dream Team dressed for halloween in white button-down shirts, bowties, khaki pants, and suspendersOne of my favorite memories from my time at Renown Health was centered on connecting with my team. After each Cooking School Workshop, all my coworkers would gather around the presentation space and sample the recipe of the day. Of course, I appreciated everyone’s help in finishing the day’s leftovers, but what I looked forward to most was the dedicated time to connect with my coworkers. After sharing company and food, everyone left the cooking space energized and ready to jump back into our work!

 

The Patient Response

Renown Health ICR patients graduate with an appreciation for all they have learned as well as deep gratitude for the team who helped them along the way. Patients can certainly tell that their rehabilitation team is dedicated to both collaboration and patient care. How do we know? Many have shared their appreciation! Below are just a few of the notes shared by Renown Health ICR graduates:

"Very impressed with the complete program. The educational classes were exceptional. The exercise program is the most complete program I have ever attended. I left the program in far better shape than when I entered. This program is a complete package exceeding expectations not to mention the level of professional, knowledgeable and caring staff. I rate the staff and the program a 10 out of 10."

"This program has been a great experience and learning process for me personally, without this program I could have done more harm to myself. All the people that guide this program are some of the best, they make you feel welcome and show interest throughout the whole program. This is a 5-star group of people!"

"The staff at Renown ICR is top notch, a real asset to your program, helping physically and restoring confidence in physical activity."

"This is a very thorough and complex program. Being a part of this opportunity has been FANTASTIC! Everyone of the TEAM added such a variety of very beneficial components in a very comfortable, challenging and realistic to help make this a lifelong endeavor."

"Great nursing staff. Wonderful dietician. Good exercise coach. My wife also appreciated the cooking sessions and dietary information."

"All team members are very knowledgeable and extremely giving of time and concern."

 

One of Lynice’s most memorable patients, Mondo, was featured in a special feature on the Renown Wellness blog, as well as on billboards across Reno. This patient-turned-ICR-advocate went to the Renown ER after experiencing a persistent earache. Aside from the earache, hadn’t been feeling quite right. A blood test revealed that he’d experienced – and survived - a widowmaker heart attack! Just over a month after undergoing a triple bypass, Mondo began attending Renown Health’s ICR program where he learned to modify his lifestyle and prioritize his heart health. He described his experience as life changing and went on to share, “The care teams at both Renown and ICR were incredible. There wasn’t a single person we came across who didn’t immediately become a part of the family. They truly cared for us, all of us, including the extended family that came to visit. They were informative and supportive. I felt like I created lasting bonds with so many of them, especially the gang in ICR. What amazing people.” Watch the video below to learn more about Mondo’s story, and get a sense of the patient experience at Renown Health’s ICR program.

 

Lynice shared, “Mondo is one of the most genuine, thoughtful, and humble people I have ever met. His love for his family is palpable. His impact on me personally and our team is forever.

Final Thoughts

Renown Health ICR has been an incredible Pritikin ICR partner since 2016. This program will certainly miss Lynice’s leadership, but they are more than capable of carrying on the torch! I am looking forward to seeing this program continue to evolve and make a positive impact on my Reno, NV community.

Lynice Anderson and the 2024 Dream Team at Renown Health ICR

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Whether at the long-standing Pritikin Longevity Center or one of our many licensed ICR facilities nationwide, Pritikin is making life-changing impacts on thousands of lives, every day.  Hear directly from providers and patients as you learn more about our decades-long history and our continued message of healing and hope.