Barry Vincent

He has been in hospital a number of times in the last couple of years. Last year in 2015, he was in three times in three months. Despite this, he fights his COPD and remains cheerful and is incredibly active in his community.

Barry is the vice president of the Wairarapa Asthma Society which he joined in 2000 and does various duties. Barry used to run the ‘Easy Breathing’ classes at the local rooms and did all the organising which included bringing in physiotherapists to take the exercises.


He also does room duties as a volunteer, which includes running raffles and small fundraising events. If other volunteers are not able to do their room duties at the local society rooms, Barry will often do it for them. 

Barry also keeps everyone up-to-date on what is happening within the community centre so society members can take part. He likes to help others if and when he can, and talks to others to discuss their asthma/COPD and exchange solutions to some of their problems.

As Barry cannot walk, he now has a mobility scooter which allows him to go out independently. This means he can go for an outing with his wife and son to do shopping without having to rely on others or a taxi all the time.

Despite having COPD, Barry tries to lead an active life as possible. Walking far or doing outside jobs are not possible because he gets short of breath, however he cooks and cleans in his home. 

He cares for his wife who has cancer and also an adult son.

To manage his condition, Barry keeps in touch with his respiratory nurse and doctor and lets them know if he has any problems. If he is admitted to hospital the nurse visits and advises him on what to do. His nurse also helps with advice on how to use his medications and nebuliser. 

Can you help other New Zealanders with a respiratory condition?

Sadly, many New Zealanders are affected by respiratory disease. One in six New Zealanders have a respiratory condition. Respiratory illness is the third leading cause of death in New Zealand.

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