The Bournemouth Chest Diseases Charitable Trust


Services Provided

The department is a self contained unit with full outpatient facilities, Lung function testing unit, pulmonary rehabilitation and office accommodation for specialist nurses, consultants and secretaries.  
Patients referred by their GP for an outpatient appointment may have specialist tests arranged before they come to the appointment and will have tests including breathing tests and chest X-rays on the day of their appointment.  They are then seen and assessed by the consultant or a member of their team and onward management arranged.  Their clinics are among the busiest in the hospital and five local GPs with an interest in chest medicine, help as clinical assistants/hospital practitioners.
A full range of chest conditions are seen including COPD, asthma, lung cancer, pulmonary fibrosis, sarcoidosis, asbestos related diseases, pleural diseases, tuberculosis, ventilatory and sleep disorders.  Diagnostic services including fibre optic bronchoscopy, Chest X-ray reporting and thoracic ultrasound for pleural procedures are offered.

The specialist nurses in the department support the consultants in the management of chest diseases using their expertise to provide support and education to the patients and to educate and support other health care professional in the community and elsewhere in the hospital with the aim to improve care across the hospital and the community.

The specialist nurses offer expertise in the following areas

  • Lung cancer:  Support to patients and carers during the initial investigation period, at diagnosis and through their journey giving emotional support, liaising with other services within the hospital and the community.  Advice is given and  assistance to enable people to obtain financial, social and practical support at home.
  • COPD:  Specialist support includes self management plans, education and advice, oxygen assessment and support, early discharge scheme (REDS) for home management.  The specialist nurses also provide education to patients, ward nurses and community teams.
  • Bronchiectasis and asthma:  Self management plans, education and nurse led clinics.  Delivery of specialist treatment including Omalizumab and nebulised treatment. Intravenous antibiotics at home for bronchiectasis with REDS team.
  • Tuberculosis:  Assistance in diagnosis of active TB including a fast track system for homeless people, treatment assessment including monitoring for complications, contact tracing and New Entrant screening.  Education is provided to both hospital and healthcare workers in the community and hospital.  Work is being done within the community to help reduce the stigma of TB and to assist community workers in recognising potential cases in the vulnerable community.

In addition the department provides to following services

  • Lung function testing:  The unit provides a full range of specialist lung function testing carried out by a highly trained expert team of respiratory physiologists.  The tests enable accurate assessments of patients with respiratory diseases to assist in making diagnoses, assessing severity and response to treatment.
  • Pulmonary Rehabilitation:  Individually tailored exercise programme for patients limited by breathlessness aimed at improving quality of life and exercise capacity.  Combined with expert advice and education.

The 4 Consultant Physicians are responsible for inpatients on ward 2&3 and supported by a team of junior doctors.  The respiratory wards include the Acute Lung unit with is a high care area able to provide high level nursing, monitoring and ventilatory support to patients with Respiratory failure.  This is achieved using Non-invasive ventilator machines which supply support to improve breathing via a face mask.  In addition the respiratory team provide a daily Specialist advice service across the hospital for inpatients at their doctors request. 

The all work closely with the Cardiothoracic surgeon from Southampton and the superb radiologists.  Patients with lung cancer are seen by the consultants and the consultant oncologists, Drs Laurence and Geldart.

The REDS TeamThe Respiratory early discharge scheme (REDS) commenced in 2009 and now provides a supported early discharge for patients with exacerbations of their lung condition enabling them to be managed safely at home with visits from our expert nursing team and physiotherapists.