Pulmonary Rehabilitation is an exercise and education programme designed for people with lung disease, who are experiencing symptoms of breathlessness.
Evidence has shown that completing of a Pulmonary Rehabilitation course can improve people’s ability to walk further, help them feel less tired and breathless when carrying out day-to-day activities, and have an improved quality of life.
Who are we
We are part of a Respiratory Integrated Care Pathway consisting of Respiratory Consultants, Respiratory Nurses, Physiotherapists, Rehabilitation Assistants and an Administration Team.
What we do
We accept patients who have a GP in West Kent.
Our Pulmonary Rehabilitation team support patients with chronic lung conditions (COPD, Chronic Asthma, Interstitial Lung Disease and Bronchiectasis) through a programme of exercise and education, either individually in their own home or in group sessions at local venues.
Our Respiratory Nurses see patients in the hospital and in the community. They also play a large roll in assessing and supporting patients, and presenting educational talks for pulmonary rehabilitation.
How is the Pulmonary Rehabilitation programme run?
Before commencing on a programme you will be assessed for suitability by a Physiotherapist, either via telephone or face-to-face at the venue where the course will be held. This will involve a medical review, an exercise test, completing some questionnaires about you and your lung condition, and setting one or two goals that you wish to achieve following completion of the programme. This usually takes around one hour.
Group courses are held at local venues, such as church halls, community centres and health centres in Maidstone, Cranbrook, Tunbridge wells, Tonbridge, Sevenoaks and Edenbridge. Classes can accommodate up to sixteen people, who all have a lung condition. The programme is conducted over 6 weeks with two sessions per week. Each of the 12 sessions consist of up to an hour exercise (including a warm-up and a cool-down), and an education session, plus a tea break where possible!
The programmes are supervised by a qualified Physiotherapist, and supported by trained health care professionals such as a Physiotherapy/Respiratory Assistant and Respiratory Nurses.
Restrictions due to Covid-19 – updated 22 June 2021
Unfortunately due to the restrictions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic we have been unable to run classes in the community. We have, however, been offering online-based and paper-based programmes which patients have completed within their own homes (with regular follow-up telephone calls from the Pulmonary Rehabilitation team).
We have successfully started face to face assessments and small classes at our Maidstone South venue, and are planning on starting at our Sevenoaks venue in early September. We are also continuing to offer home based programmes for some patients.
How do you get referred into the service?
You need to be referred by your Consultant, GP or another healthcare professional (such as respiratory nurse, practice nurse, physiotherapist or pharmacist).
British Lung Foundation Leaflets:
Pulmonary Rehabilitation and Exercise: https://shop.blf.org.uk/collections/lung-health-information/products/pulmonary-rehabilitation-and-exercise
Respiratory Integrated Pathway Administration Team
Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust
Monday to Friday 8am-4pm