Pulmonary rehab clinics to be started

All 227 CHCs will have the facility to address chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

Pulmonary rehabilitation clinics will be started in all 227 Community Health Centres (CHCs) across the State this year, Health Minister Veena George has said.

She said this in a statement here on Tuesday on the occasion of World COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) Day on Wednesday.

Pulmonary rehabilitation is a comprehensive therapeutic programme wherein the focus is on teaching breathing exercises and other aerobic exercise programmes for improving lung capacity to a patient with chronic respiratory diseases so that he is less symptomatic and his quality of life improves.

It also includes help for tobacco cessation as well as counselling services to help these patients manage depressive disorders. These services will be offered through pulmonary rehabilitation clinics so that it benefits not just COPD patients but also those suffering from other respiratory diseases and post-Covid pulmonary issues.


Physiotherapists will be made available at CHCs to help make the pulmonary rehabilitation clinics functional, Ms. George has said.

An estimated five lakh persons in Kerala suffer from COPD. The SWAAS (step wise approach to airway syndromes) clinics at family health centres were launched as part of Aardram, recognising that COPD is emerging as a serious public health issue in the State. These clinics are available now in 379 primary health centres and 39 district and general hospitals in the State and are catering to some 20,000 new COPD patients who were detected through these clinics.

More SWAAS clinics are on the anvil this year, Ms. George has said.

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