Pulmonary Rehabilitation is a service available to those suffering from Chronic Respiratory Disease. Current scientific literature clearly documents that patients who receive Pulmonary Rehabilitation have fewer hospitalizations, fewer emergency room visits, and fewer office visits. Most importantly, they enjoy a higher quality of life.
Pulmonary Rehab begins with a thorough assessment of a patient’s breathing problem. The patient receives an individually tailored rehab plan, including education and training in how to deal with being short of breath, a review of medications and how to get the most from them, and a personal exercise program.
Patients then begin a series of visits, usually twice a week for eight weeks. Exercise is a key component of Pulmonary Rehab. We have had patients come to the program so short of breath that they can’t walk for more than 3 or 4 minutes who leave able to do 20 or 30 minutes of continuous aerobic walking.
Pulmonary Rehab emphasizes good nutrition and an improved quality of life. Included are evaluations and training by a registered respiratory therapist, registered physical therapist, registered dietitian, registered occupational therapist, licensed pharmacist, and medical social worker.
Patients learn to use medications properly, to accomplish activities of daily living while minimizing shortness of breath, to accurately self-monitor their lung disease, and to communicate with their healthcare providers in a manner to assure timely intervention.
The program at Mad River Community Hospital is one of only a few in California to meet the high standards for national certification by the American Association for Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (AACVPR).
For more information about Pulmonary Rehab, call Carl Willoughby, coordinator of Pulmonary Rehabilitation Services, at (707) 822-7220, ext. 4143. Carl is a Registered Respiratory Therapist and licensed Respiratory Care Practitioner who has been working in respiratory care since 1976.