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COPD

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a progressive and disabling condition that limits airflow in the lungs1 and is leading cause of potentially preventable hospitalisations in the Nepean Blue Mountains region2

Our Services

We coordinate or commission the following local services to support COPD management:

Pulmonary Rehabilitation Service in the Hawkesbury

Through Hawkesbury District Health Service, we co-designed and fund the new Chronic Airways Limitation Management (CALM) pulmonary rehabilitation program. CALM is designed for anyone with a lung disease who has difficulty breathing and finds day-to-day activities getting harder, it is provided by a physiotherapist, specialist nurse and an assistant within Hawkesbury Community Health Services. The aims of CALM are to:

  • increase a patient's strength and the distance you can walk
  • increase a patient's quality of life
  • increase a patient's confidence and ability to cope
  • keep a patient out of hospital.

In a twice a week 8 week group program, CALM provides:

  • a supervised personal exercise program to improve a patient's fitness and ability to do day-to-day activities
  • education sessions to help with symptom management
  • peer support and social interaction
  • access to an ongoing exercise group (Lungs in Action which is also funded by the Nepean Blue Mountains Primary Health Network and runs out of Hawkesbury Community Health Services).

GPs or respiratory specialist can refer patients to this program using the CALM referral form.  For more information about the program please contact Physiotherapist Anna Bishop on 4560 5714.

Lungs in Action Exercise Class

We funded the Lungs in Action Exercise Group in the Hawkesbury, which is a safe exercise class for people with stable chronic lung conditions. The group meets on a Tuesday morning, 11am to 12pm at the Community Health Centre, Hawkesbury Hospital. 

Classes are suitable for people using supplemental oxygen and / or walking frames. There are seated options for every exercise.

The classes are run by Jane Braund, who is specially trained in exercising people with lung disease and heart failure. Phone Jane on 0401 569 215. 

Lungs in Action is an initiative developed by Lung Foundation Australia.

COPD Collaborative

Nepean Blue Mountains Primary Health Network (NBMPHN) and the Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District (NBMLHD) have agreed to the formation of a COPD Collaborative in order to improve the quality of life and wellbeing of people living with COPD. 

Over the next 9 months NBMPHN will be working together with the Improvement Foundation, who provide practical support and guidance in the use of a ‘Collaborative’ approach, methodology and principles. The COPD Collaborative has been informed and will be supported by representatives from local general practices, the NBMLHD, non-government and government organisations, including NSW Ambulance and the Lung Foundation Australia, as well as local COPD patient support groups.

Learn more about the COPD Collaborative.

Facts About COPD

With 1 in 7 Australians aged 40 years and over are living with COPD, early diagnosis and optimal management of this disease during early stages can lead to:

  • Better quality of life,
  • Decreased disease progression and mortality, and 
  • Reduced hospital admissions

A diagnosis of COPD should be considered in patients over 35 years of age who are a current or ex-smoker3. Patients may also display the following symptoms: 

  • Breathlessness, 
  • Cough, and 
  • Sputum production4

To confirm a diagnosis of COPD, spirometry is required5

1.Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (2014); Australia’s Health; Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare - Australian Government.
2. Wentworth Healthcare Limited 2016/2017 Needs Assessment. Kingswood, Australia; 2017. 46 p. [cited 2017 May 1]. Available from: http://www.nbmphn.com.au/Resources/About/130_0217-Needs-Assessment-A4_FINAL_WEB.aspx
3. http://copdx.org.au/copd-x-plan/confirm-diagnosis/
4. http://copdx.org.au/copd-x-plan/confirm-diagnosis/c2-diagnosis/
5. http://goldcopd.org/global-strategy-diagnosis-management-prevention-copd-2016/ - p.10