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Using The Lung Association’s “Find a Respiratory Program” Service

Submitted by:  Jane Lindsay, BScPT, CRE

How do your patients find a respiratory rehabilitation program? For many programs, patients need a referral….but how do patients know to advocate for themselves, if their health care provider doesn’t initiate a referral? How do they find out for themselves where programs are located?

Patients can find out about services in their area by using The Lung Association – Ontario website, In the “Support programs and groups” section you will find a list of support groups (but not Pulmonary/Respiratory Rehab Programs) in Ontario. To find a rehab program patients must use the “Find a support group or program – national” section. This tab brings you to the national database of lung-related programs at  The web site is ever changing. Keeping the database up to date is a challenge. It needs your help to make it as user-friendly and valuable as possible.

You can see whether patients can currently find your program or other local resources by following these steps:

  • From The Lung Association – Ontario home page ( click on “We can Help” then “Community Support.”
  • On the next page, click on “Find a support group or program – national”
  • Use the drop-down menu to choose a condition (or leave it blank). Enter either the province and city, or postal code and search distance, then click “search”

If you discover that a program in your area is not listed, or if there are other limitations, please contact The Lung Association at The Lung Association wants your help to identify issues and improve this valuable resource. We already know that the search option doesn’t always find existing Programs, so please let The Lung Association know if this is the case for yours.

If you would like to see your program such as asthma and COPD education and / or pulmonary rehabilitation listed on the database, please provide detailed information in the categories indicated on the checklist below and send to

  • Program title
  • Program location
  • Program contact (name, telephone, email)
  • Diseases covered (alpha-1, asbestosis, asthma, bronchiectasis, COPD, cystic fibrosis, farmer’s lung, lung cancer, occupational lung diseases, pneumothorax, pulmonary embolus, pulmonary fibrosis, pulmonary hypertension, sarcoidosis, sleep apnea)
  • Program offerings (assessment, education, exercise, group support, lung testing, maintenance/follow-up, pulmonary function testing, pulmonary rehabilitation, smoking cessation, spirometry testing)
  • Supported languages (English, French, other)
  • Audience (adults, pediatrics)
  • Types of patients accepted (inpatients, outpatients)
  • Program schedule
  • Wait period
  • Program cost
  • Referral process
  • Date the program began

Thank you for improving access to pulmonary rehabilitation across the province and helping The Lung Association share your excellent program.

The Respiratory Health Education Interest Group (RHEIG) is a multi-disciplinary group of ORCS members who promote and advance the field of respiratory education, with a specific interest in applying theory in a practical way.