ST BARNABAS: Raising awareness of respiratory disease

Hugh Lowson
Hugh Lowson

This week is Breathe Easy Week, the annual awareness event focusing on lung health, run by the British Lung Foundation.

Most people know that we care for a large number of cancer patients, but may not be aware that 31 per cent of all the patients we cared for during 2017/18 had a non-cancer diagnosis.

Of the 1,610 patients we cared for last year, 170 of those (or 10.6 per cent) were patients who had respiratory disease.

St Barnabas House operates a respiratory service which provides specialist support and advice for those with advanced respiratory diseases, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung fibrosis and lung cancer.

We have two advanced respiratory nurse specialists, Nicolette Thornton and Heather Calver, who are supported by one of our palliative care consultants, two physiotherapists, a physio technician and a counsellor.

The aim of the service is to provide optimum respiratory supportive care for people suffering with a life-limiting lung condition.

This includes symptom management, physiotherapy, psychosocial support and referral to other services we provide where required. The team provides symptom management for breathlessness and anxiety while the physiotherapists provide exercise and relaxation classes.

The respiratory team at St Barnabas House works closely with the hospital-based and community respiratory teams, including GP surgeries.

Referrals are normally made by a respiratory consultant, nurse specialist, GP or practice nurse. Other healthcare professionals can make referrals to the service, but a GP medical summary will be required.

For more information about the respiratory service at St Barnabas House, please call our clinical admin team during office hours on 01903 706350.

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