Monday 25 January 2010

Oxygen on flights

Many of you will be turning your mind to planning your summer holiday, in an attempt to get away from this winter gloom. We often see the topic of troublesome travel insurance discussed, with those with CF often dreading the prospect of hours on the phone to travel insurance companies facing hefty premiums and multiple refusals; but have you thought about whether you’re going to need supplementary oxygen when jetting off to sunnier climes?

A proportion of people with Cystic Fibrosis need supplementary oxygen when flying, due to the oxygen levels in the cabin dropping at high altitude. Charges for what is an essential for many, vary greatly, with some airlines such as BA, Cathay Pacific, Emirates, Thomson and Virgin all supplying free oxygen on the advice of a doctor; but others enforcing hefty charges of up to £500 per trip. A quarter of all airlines recently contacted by PHA-UK * do not supply supplementary oxygen at all.

Having done a spot of our own ‘secret shopper research’ we were disappointed not just with the costs some airlines enforce, but at the attitudes of airline employees when trying to arrange the oxygen. Extended periods of time were spent on hold, and some airlines claimed to simply ‘not know’ what to do about getting supplementary oxygen on a flight!

Together with the PHA-UK and the British Lung Foundation, we are working to change this situation. To help, please sign this petition.

*PHA-UK stands for Pulmonary Hypertension Association-UK

Wednesday 13 January 2010

4 Peaks 4 Bikes 4 People

A team of four people from Basingstoke Bluefins Swimming Club are taking part in a charity bike ride and climb for the CF Trust and Bluefins Club. Andrew Cackett, Gareth Waller, Oliver McSoley and Gregory Thomas plan to conquer the four highest peaks in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland and hope to raise £10,000.

They begin their challenge on 10th August in Basingstoke and estimate the challenge will take between 10-14 days. They cycle to Snowdon and will complete their first climb (3560ft) before crossing to Northern Ireland to climb Slieve Donard. From there they will cycle to Scotland to climb the highest of the four peaks, Ben Nevis at 4480ft. The final climb is England's highest Scafell Pike before cycling home. In total the ride should cover an approx 1250 miles and a total climb of 4,256 metres.

For more info go to or

Wednesday 6 January 2010

Join Team CF this January!

Whether you've over-indulged this festive season or are always fit as a flea, join Team CF and Make a Difference!

We have the world's biggest and best running events here in the UK and, with your help, we'd like to make sure that in 2010, we have our biggest and best running team...

Over 35,000 people will take to the streets on 16 May for the fantastic Great Manchester Run 10k.

Entries open at 8.30am on Thursday 7 January and will fill in literally 3 or 4 days - the last 10,000 applications will go into a ballot this year so get your place confirmed early.

The Great North Run half-marathon on 19 September will see 54,000 runners head into South Shields.

The ballot for entries opens at 8.30am this Saturday, 9 January until 8 February so please apply now. Up to 8 January you can also enter the Daily Mirrors draw for a place too.

Please use your place to run with us and help to see off CF!