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The Allied Health setting

The Allied Health members of your healthcare team can be seen in a hospital, community centre or private practice. These healthcare professionals have training in a specific body system or function and complement the rest of the team.

Allied Health professionals include:

A physiotherapist will help keep you as active as you are able to be while living with your lung disease. They will work together with you to help you to:

  • Provide education to help you develop knowledge of your lung condition and related medical problems.
  • Assist you in understanding your medicines and to use your breathing techniques to help you use your inhalers correctly.
  • Treat physical symptoms and work with you to understand and manage them.
  • find solutions to problems you may have due to your lung disease and any other conditions by doing a full assessment. This might include referral to other team members.
  • Develop and follow an exercise program to relieve symptoms and improve your quality of life.
  • Manage breathlessness with physical activity, breathing techniques, relaxation techniques, distraction techniques and pacing activities.
  • Clear secretions (mucus) from your airways with airway clearance techniques or devices.
  • Regularly check your oxygen levels and blood pressure, especially after supervised exercise.
  • You may also be referred to an exercise physiologist to develop and monitor a set of exercises, specifically designed for your individual needs.

Occupational therapists assist you by helping you:

  • Develop ways of better managing everyday activities such as washing, dressing and cooking.
  • To work out if any changes are needed at home to help you manage better.

A psychologist will:

  • Help you work through fears, worries, and resolving problems.
  • Teach you strategies to handle anxiety and depression, and how to relax.
  • Teach you how to manage panic attacks.

A social worker will provide you with information or support on documents such as Advanced Health Care Directives and in seeking services such as:

  • Home help.
  • Childcare.
  • Financial and legal advice.

A dietitian can assist you if you are underweight or overweight. The dietitian assesses your dietary requirements, and develops a nutritional intervention that will improve lung and respiratory muscle function, improve exercise performance and achieve a healthy weight.


A tobacco treatment specialist will assist you in stopping smoking. They help you quit through intensive counselling and the use of smoking cessation medicines.