Better Breathing Foundation (BBF), supported by the Lung Foundation Australia, is delighted to offer PhD scholarship funds for an evaluation of the feasibility of implementing pulmonary rehabilitation in primary care.  

Congratulations to Jessica Walsh from the University of Sydney, who will be undertaking this research.  The proposed research consists of three parts. Firstly, a study will be conducted to learn how effective an online training programme is to provide private practice physiotherapists with the skills and knowledge to perform pulmonary rehabilitation assessments and classes. The second study aims to determine whether it is feasible to provide pulmonary rehabilitation for people with COPD in a private practice setting, and whether it improves exercise capacity and quality of life compared to usual medical care provided by a general practitioner. In the final study, a survey will be designed and delivered through an existing large national network of private practice physiotherapists to understand the current barriers and facilitators of private practice physiotherapists in providing pulmonary rehabilitation in their practices.

Jessica stated, “I am very grateful to the Better Breathing Foundation and Lung Foundation Australia for the support of my PhD which aims to increase access to pulmonary rehabilitation by evaluating whether it can be conducted in a primary care setting. By increasing the availability of pulmonary rehabilitation through existing primary care infrastructure, more people will be able to enrol in and complete a program, and therefore receive its benefits.”

BBF and Lung Foundation Australia wish Jessica the best with the pursuit of her postgraduate research studies in 2022.

BBF is a not for profit organisation with the primary objective to support early career health research students to conduct high quality research on chronic lung diseases. LFA is is a national charity that aims to reduce the impact of lung disease in Australia through awareness, support, advocacy, education and research.

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