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Respiratory Services

Our Respiratory Team provides services for a full range of respiratory diseases including:

  • Alpha-I-antitrypsin deficiency
  • Asthma
  • Bronchiectasis
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Lung cancer
  • Pulmonary Fibrosis
  • Pulmonary Embolism
  • Pneumonia
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Sleep apnoea
  • Tuberculosis (TB)

Our Respiratory team includes consultant doctors and their medical teams, specialist nursing teams, physiotherapy staff and other allied health professionals.

We provide care for patients acutely ill, as a result of respiratory diseases, in hospital. We hold specialist respiratory outpatient clinics in each of the hospitals listed below:

  • Altnagelvin Hospital
  • South West Acute Hospital
  • Omagh Hospital and Primary Care Complex
Community Respiratory Service

We also provide a community respiratory service through the Community Respiratory Team (CRT) working in partnership with primary and secondary care. This team provides a Specialist Respiratory Nursing service both to patients in their home and or clinic setting.

We aim to reduce hospital admissions and facilitate early supported discharge and improve the process of diagnosis and condition management.

The teams currently operate out of Omagh Hopsital, Gransha Park and South West Acute Hospital providing more locally accessible specialist services which include:

  • CRT Assessment and Review
  • Home Oxygen Service Assessment & Review (HOSAR)
  • Pulmonary Rehabilitation

Check out our Community Respiratory Service Videos here.

How to Access Respiratory Service

If you have difficulties with your breathing you should first go to your GP. They will assess you and, if appropriate, will refer you onto the Respiratory Team for further tests and diagnosis before receiving appropriate treatment and care.

Useful Links

British Lung Foundation

NI Chest Heart and Stroke

Further Information

  • Respiratory Services Directory
    Download and Print the Respiratory Services Directory

    Respiratory Services Directory

    This Western Health and Social Services Trust area Respiratory Directory lists the names, numbers and web addresses (where applicable) of organisations that offer services for those with Respiratory conditions. All information contained in this Directory was correct at the time of going to press.

    Western Health and Social Care Trust (WHSCT) – Northern Sector

    Links to all WHSCT services

    Western Urgent Care

    T: 028 7186 5195

    Community Respiratory Team

    Northern Sector, WHSCT. T: 028 7186 5157

    Southern Sector, WHSCT
    Omagh Team T: 028 8283 3834

    Fermanagh Team T: 028 6638 2471

    Respiratory Nurse Specialists

    Altnagelvin Hospital, Londonderry. T: 028 7161 1361 Ext. 213581

    OH&PCC, Omagh
    T: 028 8283 3421 Ext. 237787
    SWAH, Enniskillen.
    T: 028 6638 2000 Ext. 252007

    Oxygen Clinic

    Altnagelvin Hospital, Londonderry. T: 028 7161 1361 Ext. 213581

    Smoking Cessation Service

    Altnagelvin Hospital, Londonderry. T: 028 7134 5171 Ext. 21464

    OH&PCC, Omagh.
    T: 028 8283 3100 Ext. 232109

    Pulmonary Rehabilitation Nurse, SWAH, Enniskillen.
    T: 028 6638 2471

    Community Respiratory Support Groups

    Breathe Easy Support Groups, British Lung Foundation

    Breathe Easy Derry Support Group

    The Old Library, Healthy Living Centre, Creggan, T: 028 7137 3820

    Breathe Easy Waterside Group

    Caw Nelson Drive Community Action Group, Crescent Community and Cultural Centre, 205-211 Sperrin Park. T: 028 7131 8100

    Breathe Easy Roe Valley Support Group
    LCDI, Limavady. T: 075 5739 4260

    Breathe Easy Fermanagh and South Tyrone Support Group ARC Healthy Living Centre.
    T: 028 6802 8741

    Respiratory Support Groups Northern Ireland Chest, Heart & Stroke

    Contact the North West Office for details on Respiratory Groups in Derry/Londonderry, Castlederg, Omagh and Enniskillen.
    T: 028 7137 7222

    Breathlessness Support Group
    Foyle Hospice T: 028 7135 988

    Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) Support Group

    Western Trust Respiratory Nurse Specialist

    Altnagelvin Hospital T: 028 7161 1361

    Sarcoidosis Support Group
    T: 078 1153 7563

    Smoking Cessation Support Group, Bogside & Brandywell Health Forum
    T: 028 7136 5330

    Local Community & Voluntary Organisations

    Post Rehabilitation Maintenance Programme Bogside & Brandywell Health Forum
    T: 028 7136 5330

    Regional Community & Voluntary Organisations

    Asthma UK

    Advice line: 0300 222 5800

    British Lung Foundation (NI)
    Helpline: 03000 030 555

    Northern Ireland Chest Heart & Stroke
    T: 028 7137 7222

    Pulmonary Fibrosis UK

    Red Cross

    NI Helplines

    Community Transport Schemes

    Blue Badge
    T: 028 6634 3700 to download application


    Carers NI Helpline T: 028 9043 9843
    Carers Support WHSCT

  • Pulmonary Rehabilitation Posters

    Download and Print the Pulmonary Rehabilitation Posters

    Pulmonary Rehabilitation is a community based programme of exercise and education for people living with a long term lung condition.

    Pulmonary Rehabilitation is designed to help you manage breathlessness, improve your fitness and ability to carry out daily activities, increase confidence and improve knowledge and understanding of living with a lung condition

    Ask your GP or Practice Nurse for more information or a referral.
    For further information contact:
    Pulmonary Rehabilitation Nurse,
    South West Acute Hospital.
    T: 028 6638 2263


    Pulmonary Rehabilitation Nurse,
    South West Acute Hospital.
    T: 028 6638 2263


  • Going Home from Hospital with Oxygen

    Download and Print the Going Home from Hospital with Oxygen Leaflet

    Going Home from Hospital with Oxygen

    Information Leaflet for Patients and Relatives

    Why have I been prescribed oxygen?

    When patients have been unwell in hospital due to their breathing, it can sometimes take longer for their oxygen levels to return to normal.

    For some patients, if their oxygen levels are low, it may be necessary to provide oxygen at home while they recover from a flare up of their lung condition.

    How long will I need oxygen for?

    The oxygen may just be temporary while you are recovering and if your oxygen levels return to normal the oxygen will be removed.

    What happens next?

    When you are discharged from hospital on oxygen a nurse will send you an appointment to attend clinic in 4-6 weeks to assess if your oxygen levels are still low and if oxygen is needed long term.

    People with lung conditions can often feel anxious which can cause breathlessness, this does not necessarily mean you need oxygen.

    Oxygen is a drug and must be prescribed according to a patient’s oxygen levels.

    If your blood oxygen levels are constantly lower than acceptable even when well, you will be advised to use oxygen and if you agree you will be prescribed oxygen on a long term basis

    Useful Contacts 

    If you have any problems with your oxygen equipment you can contact the provider British Oxygen Company (BOC) 0800 136603.

  • Pulmonary Rehab Information
    Download and Print the Pulmonary Rehab Information Leaflet

    The project consisted of: the implementation of a community- based PR programme to fulfill the unmet need of patients with respiratory disease leading to improvements in quality of life, reduced breathlessness on exertion, increased exercise capacity, improved self-management and symptom control, improved
    independence and overall health.

    Background Pulmonary rehabilitation has been shown through clinical research
    and numerous randomized control trials to have a statistically significant improvement on an individual’s quality of life and exercise capacity (Grade A evidence). NICE COPD Clinical guidelines (2010) state that pulmonary rehabilitation should be available to all patients who find themselves limited by COPD MRC 3>. There was no availability of pulmonary rehabilitation within the southern sector. Hence the development of pulmonary rehabilitation came about to benefit the health of the population, as well aiding in the prevention of hospital admissions, reduced length of hospital stay and overall improvements in patients self-management.

    Design The Pulmonary Rehabilitation service in the WHSCT Southern sector was initially set up in November 2010 and followed on from the development of the
    service in the Northern sector of the trust.

    The framework consists of a 6-week programme of exercise and education run
    by a respiratory nurse and respiratory physiotherapist. Following initial assessment and inclusion on the course, the clients attend classes twice a week and are re-evaluated after six weeks. The exercise component consists of an hour of strength and endurance training. Exercise is then followed by an education and training session delivered by a variety of health care professionals, including an associate clinical psychologist who addresses anxiety and depression. Other subjects covered include; what is COPD? , smoking cessation, breathlessness management, chest clearance exercises, healthy eating and the lungs, medications and inhaler technique, energy conservation, disease management, relaxation techniques and social benefits. Clients are then referred on for ongoing support and exercise to local Chest Heart and Stroke group.

    Outcomes The pulmonary rehabilitation programme has shown to effectively
    improve client’s quality of life, exercise tolerance and patient experience.

    Example: Patient A could walk 126 metres had moderate breathlessness on exertion,
    high depression and high anxiety levels, had given up fishing because of his lung
    disease and was unable to clear his chest phlegm effectively. Following Pulmonary rehabilitation, the client had significant improvement in his exercise capacity of
    287metres and quality of life (breathlessness, fatigue, emotional function and self-management), a reduction in anxiety and depression, was able to clear his phlegm efficiently and started back to fishing.

    Client’s comments exceeded our expectations:

    “I am a much more confident person equipped with ways and means of coping with my condition and maintaining and increasing my energy levels. The convenient provision of this very beneficial rehabilitation programme not too far from my home really clinched it for me”

    “I enjoyed my class each week and looked forward to going to it. The staff were very good at helping each one and explaining everything to us. I do not drive very much now and I was picked up and left off”

    “It is so convenient to have it held locally and the small number attending made it more personal, I am feeling the benefit of it already. I can go up the stairs now and only have to stop once were as before I had to stop at every other step”

    “before the rehab class I would have lay about all day afraid that I would get myself into a state, now I am walking to the shops and into town and getting out more”

    “I feel since doing the programme that I am ready for the Olympics next year”

  • Community Respiratory Team Leaflet
    Download and Print the Community Respiratory Team Leaflet

    Community Respiratory Team (CRT)

    Integrated Care Delivering Specialist Services Locally

    Patient Information

    You have been referred by your General Practitioner (GP), or Hospital to the Community Respiratory Team for assessment, management and support and guidance of your lung condition.

    What services does the team provide

    • Supported Discharge/In reach – This is a service for respiratory patients
      to help get them out of hospital as soon as it is safe to do so. Patients are assessed in hospital, and if they meet the criteria for the service they are discharged home and reviewed by the CRT until they return to their baseline. This may be in the form of a home visit, telephone review and/or a local clinic visit.
    • Support in the Management of Lung Disease – This service is for patients
      who are experiencing an exacerbation of their chronic lung disease. The aim of this service is to prevent unplanned hospital admissions and appropriately manage patients at home.
    • Self-Management Plan – Development of management plans in line with NICE & GOLD Standards
    • Oxygen Assessments and Review
    • Pulmonary Rehabilitation
    Community COPD Clinic

    The nursing teams are highly skilled and will be in contact with your Doctor to
    seek help if they are concerned about your condition.

    If you have any questions or concerns please raise with a member of our nursing team.

    If you have any complaints please discuss with the nurse looking after you.

    Alternatively you can contact the Community Respiratory Team Leader who will explain the Complaints Procedure with you:

    Team Leader Trustwide
    Contact: 028 7186 5157 Ext 217583.

    We are also keen to hear from you regarding any positive experiences.

    If you require re-admission to hospital at any time during the course of your treatment, the nurse will speak to the Hospital Consultant or GP to assist in your admission.

    Hours of Operation

    9am to 5pm 7 days a week, including bank holidays.

    Out of Hours GP on 028 7186 5195.

    To contact the Community Respiratory Teams please telephone:

    Omagh – Omagh Hospital & Primary Care Complex 028 8283 3834
    Enniskillen – Soth West Acute Hospital 028 6638 2471
    Derry – Maple Villa 028 7186 5157

    If staff are not available at the time of your call please leave a message on our answer machine and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

  • Pulmonary Rehabilitation Patient Resource
    Pulmonary Rehabilitation Patient Resource

    Pulmonary Rehabilitation

    Breathe Better, Move Better, Feel Better

    What is Pulmonary Rehabilitation?

    “…a multidisciplinary programme of care for patients with chronic respiratory impairment that is individually tailored and designed to optimise each patient’s physical and social performance and autonomy.”

    Why Pulmonary Rehabilitation

    Respiratory Impairment – Diagnosis of a lung condition, Fear of Breathlessness

    Inactivity/Immobility (avoiding activity)

    Muscle Weakness

    Reduced exercise tolerance (increased effort to work)

    Decreased work capacity and increased SOB

    Benefits of Pulmonary Rehabilitation

    • Increase exercise tolerance
    • Increase muscle strength and endurance
    • Reduce dyspnoea and perception of breathlessness
    • Reverse deconditioning
    • Increase knowledge of lung condition and management of the disease
    • Promote self-management and coping strategies
    • Improve health-related quality of life
    • Improve confidence in ability to exercise
    • Increase independence in daily functioning
    • Promote long-term commitment to exercise

    Who is it for?

    • All lung conditions and disease severities
    • …where symptoms and disability are present (usually MRC Grade 3) – ‘walks slower than most people on the level’
    • Contra indicated if recent MI/unstable Angina

    Course Content and Duration

    • Twice a week for 6 weeks
    • Pre and Post assessments
    • Upper and Lower limb exercises
    • Optimise your medications
    • Educational support
    • Psychological support
    • Programme evaluation

    Patient Safety 

    Staff patient Ratio

    • Exercise 1:8
    • Education 1:16

    Staff trained in Basic Life Support

    Ambulatory Oxygen

    Exercise Training: Which muscle groups?

    • Lower limb training improves exercise tolerance though no effect on measured lung function/breathing tests
    • Upper limb training improces arm strength and reducces demand for oxygen
    • Doesn’t have to be hi tech

    Education Programme

    • Conditions overview
    • Breathing control, pacing and relaxation
    • Exercise/activity
    • Medication, inhaler devices and oxygen therapy
    • Managing exacerbations
    • Sputum clearance
    • OT equipment
    • Benefits agency
    • Advanced Care Planning
    • Diet
    • Anxiety and depression

    Psychological Components

    • COPD is associated with anxiety and depressive symptoms which may interfere with activities of daily living (ADL’s)
    • Expert opinion supports the use of educational and psychological interventions in pulmonary rehab programmes
    • Typical goals: address depression/anxiety, teach relaxation skills, coping strategies.

    Pulmonary Rehabilitation Venues

    • South West Acute Hospital, Enniskillen
    • Trinity Hall, Lisnaskea
    • Omagh Hospital (OHPCC)
    • Riversdale Leisure Centre, Strabane
    • Derg Valley Leisure centre, Castlederg
    • Old Library Trust, Creggan
    • Ebrington Square
    • Presbyterian Church Hall Ballykelly

    Patient Feedback

    • I really enjoyed this programme knowing that not only myself has a lung condition and the exercises really helped me as I wasn’t really mobile and was sitting about until I went to this programme. Now I have more confidence in myself. OHPCC
    • A ‘must’ for anyone with a respiratory condition I have a major improvement in my energy levels and I am now walking to the shops and into town and getting out more. SWAH

    Client Comment

    When I first was notified about the Pulmonary Rehab course, I was very apprehensive regarding my ability to take part in the exercises. As it turned out my anxiety was put to rest by the facilitators of the course. They were empathetic and positively reassuring and tailored an exercise plan to meet my needs – and giving me praise for my efforts achieved, taught me to build on my strengths and to look at my weaknesses in a positive way, and also taught me how to use breathing techniques in a much better way. The other members of our group and I interacted well and we gelled as a group, discussing our individual needs.

    The guest speakers were also excellent in their chosen field of expertise. I would definitely sign up for another course at a later date. If practical, a six-monthly refresher course should be offered to us.

    I will keep up with the exercises and breathing techniques.” – Strabane

    How do I get referred?

    Speak to your:

    • GP or Practive Nurse
    • Any member of the Respiratory Team
    • Pulmonary Rehabilitation Service phone number
      • Altnagelvin 028 7134 5171 ext 213581
      • South West Acute Hospital 028 6638 2263

    Summary – Benefits of Pulmonary Rehabilitation

    • Improved exercise capacity (Evidence A)
    • Improved health-related quality of life (Evidence A)
    • Reduces perceived intensity of breathlessness (Evidence A)
    • Reduced hospitalisations and length of stay (Evidence A)
    • Reduced anxiety and depression associated with COPD (Evidence A)
    • Benefits probably extend well beyond the period of rehab, especially if exercise training is maintained at home. (Evidence B)

Locations where this service is delivered

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