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​Love Your Lungs in Lewisham! 

We are supporting the British Lung Foundation's Love Your Lungs Week.

The annual awareness initiative takes place from 17 to 23 June and we're keen that Lewisham residents are aware of the support and advice that's available for them.

Respiratory services are one of our clinical priorities, and we are working with NHS and Public Health England partners to tackle diseases such as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD) and asthma.

CCG Clinical Director, Dr Ravi Sharma said: "More than 10 per cent of adults have breathing problems – and the figure can be even higher with older people. And if you're affected by breathing disabilities, it can be debilitating and restrict your life.

"But there are preventative measures that can be taken that can make life more comfortable. Other behaviour changes, such as quitting smoking, can dramatically reduce a person's chances of ever getting diseases such as COPD."

Lewisham residents can also benefit in other ways too.

The Lung Exercise and Education Programme (LEEP) pulmonary rehab is a course available for adults over 18 with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and other chronic lung problems, who have a Lewisham GP. The six-week programme of exercises and education – held at three locations across the borough – takes place in a relaxed and supportive environment and is run by Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust.

There is also a Breathe Easy support group run by its members – but linked to the British Lung Foundation –in Lewisham.

The group meets on the second Thursday of every month from 11am - 1pm at Jubilee Room, St Laurence Church Catford, 37, Bromley Road, SE6 2TS, offering support and advice to members.

And smokers who want to quit can receive support from the Lewisham Stop Smoking Service, run by Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust.

Smokers are offered free, friendly, practical support and advice on medications to support smokers while they stop smoking. The support is free and all medications are available on prescription.

To book into a clinic, residents can call 07522 679249 or email and an appointment can be arranged.

Clinics are held in GP practices, pharmacies, Lewisham Hospital, and in community venues. For more information about available treatments please visit the smoke-free Lewisham website.

Anyone living, working or studying in the Lewisham borough, can download an air-quality app, Lewisham Air, to get news and alerts about air quality.

Created by King's College London, Lewisham Air gives everyone the chance to check the air quality in the borough and plan low-pollution walking and cycling routes using a specially-designed map.

If you're concerned about your breathing, or that of a loved one, The BLF's online breath test helps people understand if they should see a doctor by asking 10 quick questions. It's based on the MRC breathlessness scale, which GPs use when diagnosing someone with a lung condition. 

Dr Sharma added: "Those of us who work for Lewisham CCG are passionate about respiratory care and how we can make life better for those residents who are affected by breathing difficulties."

Anyone wishing to contact the LEEP team should email

Twitter: @leep_pr  

The pneumococcal vaccine protects against serious and potentially fatal pneumococcal infections. It's also known as the pneumonia vaccine. Find out more information here.  

Flu vaccination is available every year on the NHS to help protect adults and children at risk of flu and its complications. Find out more information here.

GP practices in Lewisham have also encouraged their patients and staff to join local parkruns in a bid to get healthier and feel better.