COPD

The Community Respiratory Team

The Community Respiratory Team (CRT) is a team of specialist respiratory nurses and physiotherapists. They work in the hospital and in the community, providing support to people with respiratory conditions.

Inpatient work

If a patient is admitted to hospital suffering with a flare-up of their COPD or asthma, the Community Respiratory Team visits them on the ward to provide education and support with their condition. They may discuss inhaler technique and changes in medication, as well as referring the patient on for further support with other teams. If necessary, they can provide interventions such as short term nebuliser loans, or assessment for home oxygen. They also run an ‘early supported discharge’ service for patients with COPD, which can help to get people out of hospital more quickly.

Chronic Disease Management (CDM)

The Community Respiratory Team has a caseload of patients in the community. These patients have a confirmed diagnosis of COPD and live in the South Manchester area. CRT provides home visits during COPD exacerbations and can liaise with the patient’s GP to provide any necessary interventions or treatment. We sometimes take blood samples and sputum samples to guide these decisions. If antibiotics and/or steroids are required the CRT will arrange this. GPs can refer patients who are acutely unwell for support staying out of hospital.

Patients can be referred to the Community Respiratory Team for long-term community COPD management by their GP, Consultant or other appropriate community team.  Alternatively, if they are reviewed by the team in hospital, they can be referred from there. Patients can be seen in clinic or in their homes.

Pulmonary Rehabilitation

People with long-term lung conditions can find it difficult to perform normal daily activities without becoming breathless. Pulmonary rehabilitation is a 6 week course of exercise and education designed to help patients take control of their condition and cope with breathlessness, whilst getting stronger and fitter at the same time. The classes are twice a week and consist of varied exercises supervised by a healthcare professional, followed by education on lifestyle factors such as medication and nutrition. With the support of healthcare professionals, a pulmonary rehabilitation course can help patients increase their activity carefully, cope with breathlessness and manage periods of panic better.

If you have a lung condition and feel you would benefit from a course of pulmonary rehabilitation, ask for a referral from your GP.

Breathe Better

A social event for people with COPD and breathing difficulties in South Manchester. Socialise and relax in a supported environment where healthcare professionals are on-hand to provide advice and answer your individual questions or concerns. This runs monthly and CRT staff are often in attendance. Please call us for more information.

Contact

The Community Respiratory Team can be contacted via the Wythenshawe Hospital Switchboard on 0161 998 7070. The opening hours are 8am-6pm, Monday – Sunday.

Patients who are already known to the team can contact them directly if they feel like they need support at home. Alternatively, patients who are not already known to the team can be referred by their GP for both pulmonary rehabilitation and the CDM service.