Prescriptions for Palliative Oxygen

It is important to remember that oxygen is a treatment for hypoxia, not for breathlessness. Patients who are breathless but not hypoxic require optimised medication and other non-pharmacological and pharmacological options should be tried.

St Catherine’s Hospice accept referrals for those living with life limiting illness for symptom control of breathlessness, regardless of the underlying cause. This would involve assessment and ongoing management from the hospice team. We are unable to accept referrals purely for the prescription of palliative oxygen when assessed by other clinicians. Palliative Oxygen can be prescribed by clinicians who are not Palliative or Respiratory specialists using a HOOF A form.

HOOF A forms only give the option of a static concentrator or static cylinder. If ambulatory cylinders are required this can be done by adding a comment in box 11 “additional information.” E.g. Please supply x number of cylinders at x l/min for x hours/ day for ambulatory purposes.

Please note that each HOOF referral is deemed a new prescription, not an additional prescription. So, if you are adding ambulatory cylinders to a previous order BOTH the previous order and the new order need to be added to the referral form. Otherwise the static concentrator/ cylinder could be removed.

Further information can be found in the “Good HOOF guide” or on the Vivisol website.

The HOOF A Form is also available to download on our website.