Pulmonary rehabilitation is one of the most effective treatments for chronic lung disease. Respiratory care is one of the focuses of the National Health Service long-term plan currently in development and new guidelines from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence are due to be published in December.
The Department supports the NHS to increase access to pulmonary rehabilitation and improve the quality of care for people with long-term respiratory conditions through the following actions:
- a national roll out of the RightCare programme by NHS England which directs clinical commissioning groups to offer pulmonary rehabilitation as part of an optimal pathway for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients;
- the COPD best practice tariff encourages NHS providers to refer patients for pulmonary rehabilitation as a financial incentive; and
- a pulmonary rehabilitation service accreditation programme run by the Royal College of Physicians.