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Respiritory is about breathing. This page gives you information about the work of the Respiritory unit and the staff involved.

Who are we?

The Respiratory Unit at the Royal Liverpool University & Broadgreen University Hospital comprises of two wards and an enhanced care unit all located on the sixth floor. The department in liaison with the cardio-respiratory and radiology departments provides a very wide range of diagnostic tests and treatments for all types of chest and lung disorders.

What do we do?

The NIV unit includes wards 6X, 6Y (49 beds in total) and a 4 bedded enhanced care area for patients requiring a higher level of care.

We provide high quality care for patients with respiratory failure and a large number of long term respiratory conditions and specialise in chronic disease management as well as acute treatment - e.g. asthma, bronchiectasis, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and lung cancer.

Our service prides itself on having close working relations with colleagues within the ITU and palliative care departments. A number of our consultants also work in Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital.

We also provided a rapid access Non-Invasive Positive Pressure Ventilation Service (NIV) for patients with respiratory acidosis, in a dedicated unit opened in 2010. This unit was specifically designed to ensure patients are observed at all times by highly skilled nursing staff.

What happens when you see us?

The Asthma Service

The specialist asthma nurses provide assessment, education and support for patients with a diagnosis of asthma within the ward and outpatient departments. There are three nurse led clinics per week as well as asthma nurse support to several of the consultant clinics. This includes two specialist clinics: one is a severe/difficult asthma clinic and the other which combines the expertise of asthma and ENT specialists.

The Asthma Nurse Specialists work closely with other members of the multi disciplinary team which includes Respiratory Physiotherapists, Speech and Language Therapists, Smoking Cessation and Substance Misuse teams as well as colleagues in Primary Care.

Find out more about our specialist asthma service and getting in touch here...

COPD service

A Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) service is provided throughout the Trust in both inpatient and outpatient settings.

The specialist nurses review all respiratory patients within the Emergency Department (A&E) and Medical Assessment Unit (MAU) with a primary diagnosis of COPD. They review, assess and recommend any treatments required. They also fast track COPD patients with a respiratory acidosis to the Respiratory Unit for non-invasive ventilation (NIV). The nursing team also has close working relationships with colleagues, such as community matrons and GP practices to enable a holistic and seamless service provision between secondary and primary care.

Liverpool Lung cancer service

The lung cancer nurse specialists are based at the Royal Liverpool University Hospital and work jointly with the doctors on both the Royal site as well as the Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital NHS Trust to provide the Liverpool Lung Cancer service. They are supported in their role by the Multi Disciplinary Team Co-ordinator. This is an essential role it assists with tracking lung cancer patients progress through their journey ensuring that there are no delays.

The unit has two arms:

  1. Outpatient services (LHCH): a rapid access lung clinic to investigate, diagnose and treat patients with suspected lung cancer
  2. Inpatient services (RLBUH): for patients who have been admitted to hospital and require investigations for suspected lung cancer.

What happens next?

The Asthma Service

Complex patients are discussed at the regional Severe Asthma Network Meeting where specialists can present patient cases for multidisciplinary discussion ensuring all available treatment options are considered. The nurses are active members of the Mersey Asthma Nurses Network which shares good practice between Asthma Specialists Nurses from local hospitals and the national charity, Asthma UK.

Find out more about our specialist asthma service here...

The team

Respiratory Consultants

  • Dr M Walshaw: Clinical lead, specialist interest Cystic Fibrosis. This service is based at the Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital NHS Trust (Amanda Unit).
  • Dr J Hadcroft: Specialist interest COPD, supervises the ACTRITE service ( a nursing team who specialise in early supported discharge for respiratory patients only) within the Trust. Patients referred to ACTRITE are reviewed in her out-patients clinic. Dr Hadcroft also carries out sessions at the Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital NHS Trust where she leads an obstructive sleep apnoea assessment service.
  • Dr C Smyth: Specialist interest lung cancer. Works closely with ITU and supports the non invasive positive pressure ventilation service within the Respiratory Unit.
    Dr P Deegan: Specialist interest COPD. He is respiratory clinical lead in the cardio-respiratory department, reviewing all pulmonary function tests in addition to supervising the Home Oxygen Assessment Service.
  • Dr E Hilal: Specialist interest interstitial lung disease. Dr Hilal's outpatients’ clinics are based within the Trust and at the Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital NHS Trust. He is also the Clinical Governance lead for the directorate.
  • Dr H Burhan: Specialist interest difficult asthma, pleural procedures and supports the non-invasive positive pressure ventilation service within the Respiratory Unit.

COPD specialist nurses

  • Janet Williams
    Nicky Garner
    Tracey Monaghan

Lung Cancer Specialist Nurses

  • Jean Hughes
    Jo Dunbar
    Claire Dowling MDT co-ordinator

Related Links

Other information

The Liverpool Lung Cancer Unit was formed in April 2000 to improve services for patients with suspected lung cancer. It's now one of the largest and most experienced diagnostic and treatment centres in the UK – and the largest cancer unit in Merseyside, providing a rapid access diagnostic service for patients with a suspected lung cancer diagnosis. The lung cancer nurses provide specialist advice, care and support for over 400 new patients and their families annually.

This service easily exceeds all waiting time targets and has been commended nationally as an exemplary service model.