Respiratory and Home Oxygen
The community respiratory team is made up of physiotherapists and nurses specialising in respiratory diseases.
The Gloucestershire Respiratory Service is a countywide integrated service linking in with primary care and secondary care services, which provides respiratory care to people over the age of 18.
There are four arms to the service:
- Pulmonary rehabilitation programmes
- Home oxygen assessment and review
- Respiratory assessment and treatment
Typically, the lung diseases managed by the service are Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), asthma, bronchiectasis and fibrotic lung disease.
The service sees people in a variety of settings, including clinics for our oxygen and physiotherapy, community venues for pulmonary rehabilitation, and home visits can be offered for those who are housebound.
Accessing the service
Acceptance into the service is by referral by any registered healthcare professional.
- For Home Oxygen, Pulmonary Rehabilitation and Respiratory Assessment, complete the Respiratory Service referral form.
- Referral into the Gloucestershire Adult Respiratory Physiotherapy Service should be made via the NHS
e-Referral Service (e-RS). The referral form is available on G-Care here>
What is Pulmonary Rehabilitation?
- Pulmonary rehabilitation is proven to reduce breathlessness and improve quality of life for people with long-term lung conditions, such as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), asthma, bronchiectasis, and interstitial lung disease.
- Pulmonary rehabilitation can help with recovery if a person has recently been unwell or in hospital with a flare up of their condition.
- It will help someone be able to do more, for example walking and daily tasks.
- It consists of exercise and education sessions and each person will work at their own pace.
How to take part in Pulmonary Rehabilitation
Pulmonary Rehabilitation can be delivered in a number of ways:
Group exercise and education classes at a choice of venue (this includes venues in Gloucester, Cheltenham, Stroud, Forest of Dean and either North or South Cotswolds).
The course commitment requires attendance twice a week for six weeks. Sessions are two hours long – approximately half the session is activity based, and half is education/helpful information.
Face-to-face classes provide the opportunity to meet other people dealing with the same symptoms, learn from each other and health professionals.
Online classes (e-Learn)
Group exercise classes are completed remotely and offer flexibility for the patient, with education materials accessed online in the form of videos and useful links.
The course commitment requires attendance at exercise classes twice a week for six weeks. Sessions are just over an hour long and educational material is completed in the person’s own time.
Participants are monitored by a health professional during the exercise, who will also call at two and four weeks into the course, to discuss progress and answer any questions.
The team can lend iPads and webcams to participants who would like to attend the online programme but do not have technology at home. Digital support to use this technology is available if required.
Home-based 'SPACE' programme
Exercising through a progressive walking programme and learning at home with the use of a manual (book) and telephone support from the team.
This option is only available to people who have been diagnosed with COPD and have a relatively high level of independence and mobility.
For further information, check out our Benefits of Pulmonary Rehabilitation video above.
The Home Oxygen Assessment Service
Patients are referred to us by their GP, practice nurse, district nurse or consultant, who will have already assessed them to see that this service will be of benefit to them.
The oxygen service offers and assessments and reviews for people who are found to be hypoxic and have one or more of the following conditions:
- Heart failure
- Pulmonary Vascular Disease (inc Pulmonary Hypertension)
- Cystic Fibrosis
- Obstructive Sleep Apnoea
A team of specialist clinicians will assess if a person is hypoxic and would clinically benefit from having oxygen prescribed.
The clinicians can offer expert advice on when and how oxygen should be used and the most suitable equipment to meet the person’s needs.
People who have oxygen and have any of the above listed conditions will be given ongoing assessment and support from the Respiratory Service.
Those who continue to have oxygen longterm will be given contact details to access the service if they have concerns regarding their oxygen.
The service office is open Monday to Friday, 8am to 4pm, excluding bank holidays. Outside of these hours there is an answerphone so they can leave a message. The service aims to return calls within 72 hours.
Respiratory assessment and treatment
The service aims to optimise the management and quality of life of patients with chronic respiratory disease, including COPD, asthma, bronchiectasis and interstitial lung disease. People will either be seen in clinic or at home if they are housebound.
Specialist Respiratory Physiotherapy
The Specialist Respiratory Physiotherapy Service offers clinic (face-to-face and virtual) and home visits for housebound patients.
Patients can be referred for:
- Airway clearance
- Breathing pattern disorder advice and support
Airway clearance support and advice is exclusively offered to those with bronchiectasis and COPD to help clear sputum and reduce infection risk. Patients will receive a comprehensive assessment and together we aim to establish a suitable chest clearance regime that patients can adhere to. Nebulisers and inhalers are often reviewed within this.
Treatment usually includes breathing exercises, drainage positions, lifestyle advice and handheld oscillating devices.
Patients usually require follow-up.
Breathing pattern disorder was historically referred to as ‘hyperventilation syndrome’. Patients can be referred if there is a very strong clinical suspicion of breathing pattern disorder.
Investigations ruling out organic causes of breathlessness and other symptoms need to be completed.
Patients receive a comprehensive assessment incorporating outcome measures and, if appropriate, will receive ‘breathing retraining’ and advice/support. This often includes techniques including: nose breathing advice, relaxation, diaphragm activation and strengthening, muscle imbalances, stress/anxiety advice and inspiratory muscle trainers.
Please refer to Specialist Respiratory Physiotherapy via ERS.
Making a referral
Patients are referred to us by their GP, practice nurse, district nurse or consultant who will have already assessed them to see that this service will be of benefit to them.
At your first appointment, we will give you contact details for members of the team so that you can access the service which operates within office hours. Even if you are no longer under our care, you can call our team in the future and request support again any time.