Respiratory disease experts are predicting a surge in the number of people who will get pneumonia and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) flare-ups over the coming winter months. It is important that if you have COPD that you ensure you have sufficient supplies of inhalers and your other medications (including your rescue pack of antibiotics and steroids) and that you also try and avoid mixing with people who already have coughs and colds over this time.
It is especially important to have your flu vaccine early this year and that you have also had the pneumococcal vaccine if you have not had it in the past. Finally, if you are still smoking, we would encourage you to consider stopping to help your chest and lung immunity. Please discuss this with your pharmacist or GP surgery when you next attend.
For those who do not have COPD please use the COVID online checker or contact NHS 111 if you have a persistent cough and fever, particularly if you are getting short of breath.
You may also find the following links helpful for further advice and guidance on COPD best practice management; plus, antibiotic prescribing in community acquired pneumonia and COPD.
- Visual summary Community Acquired Pneumonia https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng138/resources/visual-summary-pdf-6903410941
- Visual summary COPD https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng114/resources/guide-to-resources-pdf-6602624893
- Managing your COPD a patient guide https://www.blf.org.uk/support-for-you/copd/managing-my-copd
- A four page summary from NICE on managing stable COPD and also flare-ups https://www.sps.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/NICE-Bites-115-COPD.pdf