Team approach

PR programmes are usually lead by Physiotherapists or Specialist Respiratory nurses. It is delivered by a team of health professionals.


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Professions at each class:

  • Physiotherapist – Physical assessment, advice around inhaler technique, breathing technique, exercise programmes and chest clearance.
  • Respiratory nurse specialist – Functional assessment including inhaler and medication reviews, spirometry, advice on how to manage an exacerbation and action plans, oxygen therapy and self-management. Some specialist nurses can prescribe medication.

Multidisciplinary team members who attend during the programme:

  • Doctor/Consultant – Medical assessment around diagnosis, management and monitoring of symptoms. Prescribing medication, inhalers, nebulisers or oxygen therapy. Offer lifestyle advice for example exercise programmes or smoking cessation. Reviewing treatment or action plans for long term lung conditions.
  • Pharmacist - Advice on inhaler technique and inhaled medication. Information on medication and side effects. Provide smoking cessation tools such as nicotine replacement therapy.
  • Occupational therapist – Advice and referral for equipment for daily living activities, pacing and energy saving strategies, relaxation techniques and self-management.
  • Dietitian - Review of weight loss or weight gain, advice on healthy eating and tip for eating when breathless. Special diets and supplements.
  • Smoking cessation - Provide a free service to help people quit smoking for good. They provide support and products. People are more likely to successfully quit for good using this type of support which can range from one to one, telephone support or apps or local quit groups. They explore when and why the person is ready to quit.
  • Psychologist – Assess mood and emotional aspects of living with a long term respiratory condition. Treatment can include behavioural therapy, talking therapies, coping strategies and anxiety management.
  • Patient representative – Sometimes a former or “expert patient” will volunteer to act as a guide for new patients by offering first-hand experience of living with a long term lung condition. They may signpost to local support groups for people with lung conditions.
  • Exercise instructor - Advise on maintaining an exercise programme suitable for each patient’s level of fitness.
  • Citizens advice bureau / social worker - Some teams have an advisor or social worker to help with local community resources, advice on benefits or legal issues. Support for vulnerable people or those with special housing needs.