Can I get a nebuliser to use at home?

Medications used with a nebuliser can be provided on prescription, but the nebuliser itself isn't always available on the NHS.

However, if your consultant or specialist respiratory clinic decides you would benefit from using a nebuliser at home, they may arrange this for you. The nebuliser will belong to the hospital or your community respiratory service. They will be responsible for its service and maintenance.

In some areas, a local respiratory service may provide the device without charge, but if this isn't an option, you may have to pay for a device.

If your health care professional arranges a nebuliser for you, it is important that he or she arranges for you or your carer to be trained to use it. You should also be shown how to look after it and how to make sure it is working properly.

Research has shown that it is not that easy to use a nebuliser to get the best results at home. So make sure you have a plan agreed with your health care professional about when to use a nebuliser. You should also discuss possible side effects. Your plan should also cover what to do in an emergency, if the nebuliser breaks down, or is very slow.

We recommend that you only use a nebuliser at home only if your health care professional has recommended one for you. It is also important that you or your carer have been trained about using it and you are prescribed medications to be used with a nebuliser.

Next: Cleaning your nebuliser >

Last medically reviewed: August 2015. Due for review: August 2018

This information uses the best available medical evidence and was produced with the support of people living with lung conditions. Find out how we produce our information. If you’d like to see our references get in touch.