PICS is thrilled to confirm that Briony Warren, PICS’ spirometry-accredited nurse who detects early signs of lung disease, has visited almost every General Practice surgery across Mid Nottinghamshire. Spirometry testing of lung health was postponed due to the risk of Covid-19 transmission, but now we are tackling the waiting list and reducing pressure on Primary Care.

Briony also works in the Integrated Care Board’s Targeted Lung Health Check service and took the opportunity to talk about both her projects during a recent high profile visit. Both Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Steve Barclay were very interested in the different interventions to check lunch health when they visited Nottingham on 27 June 2023 and observed Briony caring for a patient.

Launched in September 2022, PICS Spirometry service aims to reach thousands of residents to either confirm their diagnosis of COPD or update their records and help inform further care options. Spirometry is a test where the patient breathes into a device that measures how well their lungs work. The test confirms or excludes a diagnosis of COPD (Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), which is a lung disease that makes it hard for a person to breathe.

Briony Warren joined PICS in September 2022 to deliver the service and has been adding value by also supporting the accreditation of Practice staff who are on the course for spirometry.

PICS was allocated funding for the year-long intervention by the Integrated Care Board. Hazel Firmin, Lead Nurse in Primary Care for PICS, responded to their request for ideas about how a limited fund could be used to support General Practice Nursing.

Dr Kelvin Lim, PICS Medical Director, says “In future, Practices will have fewer COPD tests to undertake due to a change in guidance from NHS England, so we’re already looking at creating ‘respiratory hubs’ for practices to call out as and when they need them – like a mobile clinic. The idea is that we can also offer asthma tests, saving each Practice considerable costs and time to set up, provide specialist training and maintain their own service.”

PICS offers expertise in this area from our Respiratory Service (More.)