Pulmonary Rehabilitation

Pulmonary Rehabilitation for Bexley Borough, South East London ICB.

RespiriCare are proud to be the sole provider of Pulmonary Rehabilitation for Bexley Borough. RespiriCare took over the service in October 2015 and ran its first successful course in November/December 2015.

What is Pulmonary Rehabilitation?

Pulmonary Rehabilitation is a nationally recognised treatment programme which improves patient’s quality of life and exercise capacity (BTS, 2015). It is highly recommended for patients with breathing difficulties. To read more about the national guidelines please click here.

What does it mean for patients?

Patients undergo an initial assessment prior to be enrolled on the course. This assessment takes approximately 60 minutes and includes a thorough medical assessment and measurements of baseline levels of walking ability, quality of life and well-being. Following the assessment, if patients are suitable they are enrolled on the programme.


The programme consists of a 6 week course of exercise and education which has been specifically designed for people with breathing problems. These breathing problems may include: COPD, Asthma, Interstitial lung disease, Bronchiectasis and others. The exercise programme helps to improve both cardiovascular and strength fitness levels which in turn makes activities of daily living easier and helps you to feel less breathless. We actively encourage participants to work at their own level whilst also teaching methods of how to cope with breathlessness.

The educational component uses the Asthma and Lung UK’s Self-Management Booklet to inform patients as to how to better manage their condition. It combines spoken sessions with supplementary written material. Educational topics include Managing Breathlessness, Managing Cough and Sputum, Recognising and Managing Chest Infections, Inhalers and Inhaler Technique, Oxygen Therapy, Supporting your Mental Health to support your Physical Health, Diet and Nutrition in Lung Disease, and many others.

Who is eligible for Pulmonary Rehabilitation

Patients who live in the borough of Bexley or who are registered with a GP in the area and:

  • All patients with COPD who consider themselves functionally disabled by breathlessness (usually people with an MRC score of three or more)
  • Patients with a confirmed diagnosis of other chronic progressive lung conditions (e.g. bronchiectasis, interstitial lung disease, chronic asthma and chest wall disease and also patients pre and post thoracic surgery including lung transplant)
  • Patients who have either recently had an exacerbation of COPD requiring a hospital admission or whose functional baseline has significantly altered and is not following the expected recovery path

Pulmonary Rehabilitation may not be suitable for:

  • Those who have significant unstable cardiac or other disease that would make pulmonary rehabilitation exercise unsafe.
  • Those who are unable to walk or whose ability to walk safely and independently is significantly impaired due to non-respiratory related conditions.
  • Those unable to participate in a group environment or for who group sessions are not suitable.

Our Staff

We have a team of extremely experienced and highly skilled Chartered Physiotherapists who lead the courses who are assisted by our excellent support staff. To read more about our staff please click here.

Our Venues

The service is provided at two venues. The first of which is Christ Church which is situated of the Broadway, Bexleyheath, DA6 7BT. There is a bus stop directly outside the centre (Trinity Place – buses 89,96,422,486, 811) and there is ample free parking on site. Classes are currently run on a Tuesday and Friday at 10.00 am or 12.00 noon

The second venue is the North Heath Family Church, which is situated at 1 Mill Road, Erith, Kent, DA8 1HW. Local bus stops are Northumberland Park Stop: 229, 602, 669, and Hurst Road Stop: 89. Parking available on single yellow line outside hall, or in a pay and display car park approximately 100 meters from hall. Classes are currently run on a Monday and Thursday at 10.30am.

Joint working with our South East London colleagues.

If you interested in attending pulmonary rehabilitation but are unable to attend the venues in Bexley, we can refer you to services provided by our colleagues in the surrounding South East London boroughs. If you would like to see more about Pulmonary Rehabilitation services in South East London, please see the following web page with some short videos explaining more about what to expect from the service short videos Pulmonary Rehabilitation - South East London ICS (selondonics.org).

Referring to Pulmonary Rehabilitation.

A referral to Pulmonary Rehabilitation can be made via a referral form available on DXS and emailed to pulmrehab@nhs.net. If you do not have access to DXS please email the team for further details on how an alternative referral can be made. Further information about the service can be provided by contacting the Pulmonary Rehabilitation Team on 07715 639410

To find out more about our programme or to make a referral, please email us pulmrehab@nhs.net or call us on 07715 639 410.