Medical leaders throughout Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire have this week been supporting the British Lung Foundation’s Breathe Easy Week.
The week lasts until Sunday and highlights the issues associated with lung conditions such as asthma and COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease).
Tackling these conditions and improving how they are managed is a priority to the county’s clinical commissioners who are currently developing a Staffordshire wide respiratory strategy.
Dr Mukesh Singh is a senior partner in the Horse Fair Practice in Rugeley and has a special interest in respiratory conditions. He is also the Respiratory lead for Staffordshire STP.
Dr Singh said: “Any condition which causes difficulty in breathing is very distressing. That is why we want to prevent patients getting these conditions and help get an early and accurate diagnosis if they do have them.
“There is also a lot patients can do to help manage their condition. For instance, many are afraid if they exercise it will make them breathless, whilst in fact exercise is positive and becoming fitter will help patients to be less out of breath.
“Everyone is different and we therefore want to see every patient who needs one to have an individual action plan, and support as close to home as possible to help prevent unnecessary hospital admissions. This will include early support and education alongside rapid access to a specialist to help them to keep their condition stable.”
Another priority is to ensure everyone across Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire has the same access to services.
Dr Singh added: “This will include updating skills and knowledge among our staff and ensuring GP services, hospital services and social care services work even more closely together.
“We also need to ensure patients are prescribed the most appropriate medications.”