With the first major cold spell upon us there has been a lot more pressure getting doctors appointments.
Some surgeries are very good, others seem to have patients on hold for ages, causing immense frustration.
For those with respiratory problems and who have been referred to the CRIS specialist nurses by their GPs, they respond very quickly to being called and come to your home.
Ringing them eases doctors’ time and gives a very useful service to patients.
Although they have had cuts, the CRIS team are still trying to maintain their high standards in dealing with problems.
There is a continuing interest from people in the pulmonary rehabilitation exercise groups, with more realising the benefits it can give to the improvement in the quality of their lives.
The maintenance group which is offered to patients who have completed the six-week programme has now moved to Gosport Leisure Centre due to the numbers of patients using the service.
Kathy and Kellie, the two physiotherapists connected with this group, are excellent and despite 30/40 people being there, still manage to maintain a caring atmosphere where everyone feels valued as an individual.
The group itself has a great mixture of patients, from those with oxygen tanks, to those with IPF, to seemingly more abled people.
Apart from the actual exercises, it is feeling part of a group who all suffer in a similar way, so everyone knows, helps and encourages each other in a good- humoured fashion.
The new venue also gives a valuable space where carers can sit and relax for an hour if they want.
It’s very easy to forget about the important part carers play, not just with respiratory problems but in all conditions.
They also need to be cared for because if we don’t there will be more demand on medical services.
They are too often the forgotten heroes who, through their care, give so much.
The next Breathe Easy meeting will be on Thursday from 2pm-4pm at Gosport Leisure Centre and anyone is welcome to attend.
There are usually guest medical speakers and, provided they are able, members of the CRIS team.
It is not a formal meeting but a very useful focus to find out more about how to deal with respiratory problems for patients, carers, family and concerned friends.
For more information go to blf.org.uk/BreatheEasy/Detail/Gosport.