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Your Breathing Matters – online learning sessions open to all

We asked people who live with respiratory conditions, and their families, what they thought would help them to live as well as possible and they told us that they’d like to be able meet members of their respiratory healthcare team, learn from them and be able to ask questions outside of clinical settings.

In response, we are now planning to hold regular online sessions focused on “living well with your respiratory condition and symptoms”.  Sessions will be offered every month or 6 weeks, with each session having a different focus, and led by respiratory and self-management specialists from the NHS and 3rd sector.  Sessions will always include the opportunity to ask questions, either in advance (by email) or during the session itself.  There is no need to speak unless you want to.

Videos and presentations from previous sessions (more details below)

Can Singing Really Help My Breathlessness - a talk by Anne Richie, Coordinator of the Cheyne Gang (Session 3 - Jun'22)

Healthy Home - Healthy Humidity and Air Quality - A Self Help Guide - a talk by Donnie Mackay, Energy Advice Manager (Session 2 - Apr'22)

Breathing, Thinking and Functioning - a talk by Michelle Duffy, Specialist Respiratory Nurse (Session 1 - Feb'22)

Let's Get On With It Together - a talk by Joanne McCoy, LGOWIT (Session 1 - Feb'22)

Your Breathing Matters – full programme of sessions

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We are busy putting together a full programme of Your Breathing Matters sessions for the rest of 2022, each with a different focus.  The sessions will be hosted by Michelle Duffy, one of NHS Highland's specialist respiratory nurses.  Look out for updates, as speakers are confirmed.




October 25th


Are you getting the best from your inhalers?

How can I use Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland (CHSS) to help me keep well?

Respiratory Pharmacist

Debbie Sutherland, community support services manager CHSS

Dec 7th   


Are you winter ready?

NHS Highland community respiratory nurse team


You are welcome to sign up for just one session, or all of them, depending on your needs and interests.  If you would like to suggest other topics, please let us know at:  nhsh.communityrespiratoryteam@nhs.scot

Sessions will be continuing beyond 2022, with topics likely to include:

  • Support groups available in the Highlands and how they can help
  • Identifying and managing anxiety and looking after your mental wellbeing
  • Pulmonary rehab – what it is and why it is important
  • Respiratory conditions – diagnosis, treatment, progression
  • Advice about discussing what matters to me and advanced care planning
  • What to do when you have a flare up – medication and other interventions
  • What you should expect from your GP and practice nurse
  • How the specialist respiratory nurses work & what they have to offer
  • When to call an ambulance & how the paramedics decide what to do next
  • How housing can impact on your respiratory health and what to do about it
  • Introducing you to the Highland’s peer support groups
  • Advice about healthy eating including food choices, frequency, portion size
  • Coping with loss and bereavement
  • Caring for somebody with a respiratory condition and taking care of yourself

Technology: The Your Breathing Matters sessions will use the Near Me group video conferencing technology – which is very simple to use.  All you need is: 

  • PC, laptop​, smartphone ​or tablet 
  • Reliable internet connection 
  • Chrome or Safari internet browser 

For more information about using Near Me, please visit the national Near Me website, where you will find an FAQ and technical information.  There is local Near Me information at: NHS Highland - Near Me and you can make a test call  at: Near Me Test Call

Limited places: Only 30 people can attend each session, with places allocated on a first come first served basis – so book your place early, to avoid disappointment.  If you aren't able to attend on the day, please let us know as soon as possible, so your place can be offered to someone else.

Your Breathing Matters - 5th session - Tuesday 25th October 1pm-2pm

Session 4 - This session we have two topics: Inhalers and Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland

Visit Eventbrite to book your place at this Your Breathing Matters session by following this linkhttps://bit.ly/YBM-5-2022

Date and time: Tuesday 25th October at 1pm to 2pm

Hosts: Your host for this online learning session will be Michelle Duffy, one of our specialist respiratory nurses, and she will be joined by:

  • A respiratory pharmacist - who will be giving a talk about "Are you getting the best from your inhalers?"
  • Debbie Sutherland, community support services manager CHSS - who will be giving a talk about "How can I use Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland (CHSS) to help me keep well?"

Technology: The session will use the Near Me group video conferencing technology – which is very simple to use.  All you need is: 

  • PC, laptop​, smartphone ​or tablet 
  • Reliable internet connection 
  • Chrome or Safari internet browser 

We’ll send you some more details and the link you’ll use to join the session on the day

Places: The Near Me system can now accommodate 60 participants, so encourage your friends and colleagues to register.


Your Breathing Matters – videos and presentations from previous sessions

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Session four - 23rd August 2022

Corinne Clark, Specialist Asthma Nurse - living well with asthma


Session three - 21st June 2022

Anne Ritchie, coordinator for the Cheyne Gang - Can Singing Really Help My Breathlessness


Session two - 20th April 2022

Donny Mackay, Energy Advice Services Manager, Skye & Lochalsh Housing Association - ways to look after the air you breathe: helping your home to breathe can help your breathing

Towards a Healthy Home - Managing Dampness, Humidity and Air Quality - a presentation from Lochalsh & Skye Housing Association (Session 2 - Apr'22) 

Jude Colligan, Specialist Respiratory Physiotherapist - who talked about managing your cough and ways to cough effectively to keep your chest clear  - video to follow

Session one - 23rd February 2022 - Learning to live well with breathlessness

Michelle Duffy, one of NHS Highland's Specialist Respiratory Nurses - Breathing, Thinking and Functioning - managing breathlessness.

Joanne McCoy of LGOWIT - self-management tips and skills.


Hints and Tips Shared by Patients at Your Breathing Matters Sessions

 Take out your phone and read a few texts or take some photos to distract you and help you feel calm          Carry a plastic bag in your pocket so you can put it down and sit anywhere whenever you need a rest   Let those you are with know when you need to take a rest and focus on your breathing           

What do you think about the Respiratory Resource Hub?

Please go to our brief feedback survey to tell us what you think about the Respiratory Resource Hub.  We would particularly like to know if you think any information is missing, or there are other topics you would like the resource hub to cover.