As part of its Right Treatment, Right Place campaign and to coincide with World COPD Day on 19th November, Tameside and Glossop Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is informing patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) of the risks the winter weather can have on their health and how they can manage their condition.
COPD is an umbrella term used for serious lung diseases including chronic bronchitis, emphysema and chronic obstructive airways disease. COPD kills more people in the UK each year than bowel, breast or prostate cancer. In Tameside and Glossop approximately 6,000 people have been diagnosed with COPD and there are potentially 4,500 people unaware they have the condition.
Cold weather and strong winds can worsen COPD symptoms causing shortness of breath, coughing and mucus. On particularly cold days anyone with COPD is advised to stay indoors, but if travel is necessary, symptoms can be alleviated by covering the nose and mouth with a scarf.
Other preventative measures to manage COPD include:
• Ensure you have appropriate inhalers and know how to use them
• Seek advice from your GP or practice nurse as soon as you start to feel unwell
• Check if your GP practice offers online ordering of repeat prescriptions. Some GP practices also offer online access to your own medical records
• Get the flu vaccination
• Keep warm
• Eat a healthy diet
• Smokers should seek advice and guidance on how to quit through Stop Smoking Services
The theme of this year’s World COPD Day is “it’s not too late” and that’s a message endorsed by the Chair of Tameside and Glossop’s Breathe Easy Group, Ian Kenworthy.
Ian, who recently became the first ever patient to be appointed to the Board of the British Lung Foundation, said: “Whenever you see a poster about lung disease it always inspires pity. There’s so much ignorance around lung disease. People always assume patients are smokers but that’s not always the case. It can be a condition you’re born with as well as one that you acquire.”
The Tameside and Glossop Breathe Easy Group meets on the 3rd Thursday of each month at Grafton House, Hyde at 1.30pm and has raised funds for Tameside Hospital and organised day-trips for lung disease patients. The group is supported by health professionals including the CCG.
Ian continued: “People can feel very isolated but our group is about mutual support and making people aware that there are others with the same conditions.” “We need to be proactive in supporting lung health” Dr Amir Hannan, local GP and the CCG’s Lead for Long Term Conditions said: “Respiratory disease, including COPD is one of the CCG’s key priorities and we are working to enhance local services for our public. Patients diagnosed with COPD should ensure they are getting the right treatment in the right place, such as pulmonary rehabilitation services. If you are not taking part in a programme speak to your GP about it.”
Louise Brady, a practice nurse based at the Donneybrook Medical Centre said: “As a practice nurse it’s so important to work closely with people with respiratory problems, we need to be proactive in supporting lung health.”
Ian will be joined by staff from the CCG on Wednesday 19th November 2014 from 10am until 4pm at Sainsbury’s supermarket, Oldham Street, Denton. They will be giving out information and advice about a range of respiratory conditions. For further information please go to your own GP practice website www.tamesideandglossopccg.org or www.nhs.choices.
You can also follow the CCG on Twitter (@TGCCG) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/tgccg). Join in the conversation on Twitter using the hashtags #rightplace and #earlyadvice
Notes to Editors
1. The ‘Right Treatment Right Place’ campaign aims to raise awareness of the service options available should someone become unwell and then help people select the most appropriate NHS service for their specific need. The campaign’s key messages are that many health problems can be treated at home with self care, that patients should visit their pharmacist, GP or walk-in service before visiting A&E and to drive home the point that A&E is for serious or life threatening conditions only.
The ‘Right Treatment, Right Place’ campaign, part of the Choose Well initiative, uses a simple traffic light system with icons to provide guidance on self care, professional health services and A&E services. The campaign is using the hashtag #rightplace
2. Tameside and Glossop CCG commissions health services for a population of approx. 240,300
3. The CCG Membership is led by local GPs from member practices across five geographical localities; Ashton, Denton, Glossop, Hyde and Stalybridge
4. The CCG’s headquarters are located at New Century House, Progress Way, Windmill Lane, Denton, Manchester, M34 2GP
5. Tameside and Glossop Breathe Easy, Chairman, Ian Kenworthy (contact: email@example.com or Tel 0161 338 4186
For further information please contact: Adam Shepphard Head of Communications, Tameside and Glossop CCG
T: 0161 304 5849 M: 07500 977 330 E: firstname.lastname@example.org W: www.tamesideandglossopccg.org @TGCCG facebook.com/TGCCG