Midlothian Patients Set to Benefit

Patients in Midlothian with long term conditions are set to benefit from a pulmonary rehabilitation programme – the first time it has been offered locally. NHS Lothian is providing funding of 64,000 for a one-year pilot.

The programme is available to patients with chronic chest and breathing complaints such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema. The collective term for these conditions is Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

Midlothian Community Health Partnership (CHP) has formed a Pulmonary Rehabilitation Team which is based in Bonnyrigg Health Centre and consists of physiotherapy and occupational therapy.

The innovative service will allow patients to have initial assessments carried out in their own home environment and access treatment locally in church halls and community centres.

Patients are prescribed individual exercise programmes designed to increase fitness, improve muscle strength and allow them to better manage their breathlessness. Evidence suggests that this can improve patient’s abilities to manage everyday activities.

Alison Scott, senior physiotherapist on the Pulmonary Rehabilitation Team, acknowledged



“We are delighted to be able to provide this service. The programme will bring enormous benefits to patients with COPD, in particular helping with breathing problems which cause difficulties with everyday tasks. The programme aims to help people maintain their independence.”
The Pulmonary Rehabilitation Programme focuses on teaching self-management of the condition through sessions of exercise and education over a six week period. Sessions take place on a twice weekly basis in community locations making them more accessible. Patients will be taught breathing techniques, how to use their medication effectively, as well as advice on how to stop smoking and healthy eating.


Charles Winstanley, Chair, NHS Lothian said:
“I am delighted we are providing this service to Midlothian patients with long term conditions.
“Our ‘Better Heath, Better Care’ strategy has enabled us to focus and deliver services such as pulmonary rehabilitation in local communities.
“It is important that such services are designed to fit the needs of each community and are equally accessible to all. The investment into this programme will contribute to quality patient care in the community and prevent many people needing to go to hospital.”
The Pulmonary Rehabilitation Team work in conjunction with healthcare staff including GPs, pharmacists, dieticians, district and practice nurses. Other organisations such as Citizens Advice Bureau and Midlothian Council will also offer advice and support.
The pulmonary rehabilitation programme is running across four venues. The new service has already begun at Bonnyrigg and Dalkeith Community Centres and will be rolled out to Penicuik and Newbattle in the coming weeks.
To be referred to the programme patients need to contact their GP or Practice Nurse. For more information contact the Midlothian Pulmonary Rehabilitation Team on 07500 765 922 or 07500 765 923.