The workshop is for chronic lung disease patients whose physicians have recommended they undergo rehabilitation to improve their condition. The purpose of rehabilitation is to mitigate the symptoms, improve physical strength and ability to participate in day-to-day activities, which improves quality of life. This is done through physical training, nutritional consulting, teaching patients about their disease, learning how to reduce shortness of breath and more.
Pulmonary rehabilitation is treatment method supported by lung associations worldwide and is viewed as a component of the overall treatment provided to chronic lung patients. Because chronic lung diseases lead to significant deterioration of lung function, and a large part of this cannot be treated with medication, the breathing issues cause patients to reduce their levels of physical activity, which in turn leads to further decline in their ability to function. These limitations remain despite the best medication therapy. Rehabilitation can definitely improve their physiological, psychological and social condition of patients, reduce the symptoms of the disease and improve quality of life as well as prevent additional deterioration.
Attending physicians in the community refer patients for participation in the workshop.
The workshop is made up of 24 meetings a year, in which the patients do exercise tailored to their specific needs and receive education about a healthy life style and independent physical activity in the community.
Additionally, if necessary, other staff members such as social workers and nutritional specialists will participate in the workshop.
At the beginning of the workshop, the patients undergo assessment by a pulmonologist and physical therapist on staff at Hillel Yaffe.
The assessments include tests to determine the extent of shortness of breath and fatigue, 6-minute walk test and quality of life questionnaires. Similar tests are run during and at the end of the program. At the beginning of each training session, the vital signs of all patients are taken (pulse, blood pressure, oxygen saturation at rest).
The workshop is run on an outpatient basis in groups, and patients can join at any time. It is held in Hillel Yaffe's Physical Therapy Institute, which is equipped with everything required for exercise and functional training, as well as equipment that allows close monitoring and supervision, given that the patients suffer from significant chronic lung disease and sometimes from heart and other diseases as well.