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Better Breathing Clinic

Are you having trouble managing your chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)? The Better Breathing Clinic at UPMC Northwest can help.

We offer free monthly classes on the following topics:

  • Anatomy and physiology of the lung
  • Medications and inhalers used to treat COPD
  • Exercise and COPD
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Dietary needs of people with COPD
  • Behavioral changes
  • My COPD plan (see box to the right)

The Better Breathing Clinic also provides a level of personal support from patient to patient and family to family. The classroom environment enables patients and family members to talk with each other and share experiences.

Reducing Readmissions of COPD Patients

The Better Breathing Clinic was introduced as part of UPMC Northwest's overall effort to reduce readmissions for COPD patients. Doctors at the hospital also identified several ways to decrease the number of readmissions by studying the habits of COPD patients after they left the hospital.

These include:

  • Flu and pneumonia vaccinations
  • Obtaining a spirometry measurement
  • Measuring alpha-1 antitrypsin levels
  • Testing pulse oximetry with exercise
  • Educating patients about the proper use of COPD medications and inhalers

For more information about the Better Breathing Clinic at UPMC Northwest, call 814-676-7927.​​

My COPD Plan

My COPD Action/Management Plan is a red, green, and yellow color-coded system from the American Lung Association to help patients identify the various stages of their illness.

The average COPD patient waits 3.6 days too long before recognizing that they are getting in trouble. Every aggravation of the disease endangers a little more lung function.

Additional Resources

Pulmonology/Respiratory Care

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For help in finding a doctor or health service that suits your needs, call the UPMC Referral Service at 412-647-UPMC (8762) or 1-800-533-UPMC (8762). Select option 1.

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