Cardiac rehabilitation should be offered to all suitable patients, health campaigners have urged.
They want more angina sufferers and people with heart failure to be able to benefit from the treatment.
The British Heart Foundation (BHF) Scotland and Chest, Heart and Stroke Scotland (CHSS) said that while almost two thirds of those who have had heart attacks or cardiac bypass surgery received rehabilitation, the number of angina patients and people suffering from heart failure who were helped in this way was far lower.
The two groups said figures from 2008 showed that just 3% of angina sufferers and less than 1% of those with heart failure were offered this kind of support.
And they said there had been little improvement since then.
Cardiac rehabilitation includes supervised exercise sessions along with education to help patients live as full and healthy a life as possible.
The two charities argued that rehabilitation was modest in price, costing about £600 per patient, and could help save lives, with heart patients 30% less likely to die over a ten-year period if they have taken part in a cardiac rehab programme.
Ben McKendrick, senior policy and public affairs manager at BHF Scotland, said: "Cardiac rehab saves lives, but there is an unacceptable gulf between the levels of support offered to patients with different heart conditions. When someone suffers a heart problem - be it angina, a heart attack or heart failure - they not only suffer a damaged heart but often a damaged spirit as well. Heart patients tell us that cardiac rehab helps mend that spirit and puts them on the road to living a full life again."
Brian Green, 52, from Tranent in East Lothian, received rehabilitation after he developed heart failure following a heart attack he suffered while on holiday in South Africa two years ago. This helped him improve his health and fitness, and he is retraining for a new career in health and safety and also works as a volunteers driver for CHSS charity shops.
CHSS chief executive David Clark said: "Cardiac rehab should be fully recognised as being central to the treatment and care of all heart patients who might benefit, as Brian's story demonstrates. We congratulate the hard work of the many professions involved in providing high-quality cardiac rehabilitation programmes, but would like to see every patient who is suitable, and who wants it, having the chance to access this invaluable support."
Health Secretary Nicola Sturgeon said "excellent" progress has been made in offering rehabilitation.
She said: "In 2007 around 45% of people in the clinical priority groups had access to cardiac rehabilitation, this figure has now risen to 65%. While this substantial increase is a great achievement, we recognise that there is still much more to do to help improve the quality of care for people living with heart failure. Our National Advisory Committee on heart disease will continue to work closely with cardiac services and the voluntary sector to take this forward. Our focus is not just on providing the best possible care in the acute setting, but also on helping people's longer-term recovery in their own communities."
For more information on cardiovascular health, visit the STV Health Centre, brought to you by NHS inform.