Cumbria providing more support for people with long term lung conditions

The annual Pulmonary Rehabilitation and Breathe Easy week takes place 18th -24th June. 

NHS teams across north Cumbria will be working hard to raise awareness of the benefits of exercise for those with lung conditions throughout the week.

Pulmonary Rehabilitation is a physical exercise programme designed to help people with a lung condition to improve their fitness, learn how to exercise safely and build confidence in doing so.

Lori Prescott, Team Lead in Carlisle said “The local teams will decide together with patients what may be the best way forward to improve their fitness, breathlessness, walking distance and overall wellbeing. This could be by attending the programmes, support accessing local gyms, community centres, classes, home based programmes via DVDs, therapy support or even in some areas we have Virtual Reality Headsets for  Home based Pulmonary Rehabilitation programmes.

“Patients don’t have to be ‘unwell’ to attend; even though they may feel they do plenty of physical activity in normal everyday life, these exercises are targeted to improve their condition rather than maintain their current state. The programme runs twice a week for 7 weeks – with patient ranging from 30 to 90 years old all working in one room with one united  cause of trying to improve themselves. It is a very unique comradery!”

The class is a relaxed, friendly and supportive environment suitable for those struggling with the basics of getting washed and dressed in a morning to those just wanting to help make sure they remain well and active.

Classes are delivered in community settings and GP practices.  Information sessions are schedule alongside class to learn the key skills necessary to help manage their own condition in the present and future. Ask your GP to make a referral.

Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust’s specialist respiratory staff will be visiting GP surgeries in Carlisle, Longtown and Brampton throughout this week working with practice nurses to raise awareness of what programmes are available locally so they can share with their patients.  There will be an information stand in the atrium at the Cumberland infirmary for anyone to find out more about what is available.

Self help groups

Sing yourself betterSummer Singing for Breathing; a free friendly singing group for people with respiratory conditions to help improve breathing control is also being held at the Cumberland Infirmary. No experience of singing is needed. Sessions are held monthly and the first one will be Thursday 21st June. For more information contact Susie Tate Healing Arts Coordinator Susie.tate@ncuh.nhs.uk  telephone 0755447885

Breath of Life Self-help group meet weekly in Carlisle provide respiratory rehabilitation sessions, low impact exercise class, support for members and carers, social activities along with group outings. Contact Carole on 01228 711456 or email infor@breathoflifecarlisle.org.uk www.breathoflifecarlisle.org.uk

The Breathe Easy group meet monthly in West Cumbria supported by the British Lung Foundation provides free help and support to people with lung problems and their carers manage their condition, meet socially with other people suffering from the same problem. For more information, dates and venues for the group telephone 01900 818419 or email Sharon_burns@sky.com

Notes to Editor

COPD, Bronchiectasis, Pulmonary Fibrosis or Chronic Asthma are all long term lung conditions which make people breathless, tired and find it harder to do everyday activities.

Lori Prescott available for interview by contacting the communications team.