Harefield Hospital non-invasive ventilation (NIV) service

The home non-invasive ventilation (NIV) service at Harefield Hospital supports patients with a variety of respiratory conditions who may need support to breathe at night using a small, portable ventilator.   

Patients with respiratory conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cystic fibrosis, curvature of the spine, and neuromuscular disorders (like muscular dystrophy and motor neurone disease) typically develop under-breathing while they sleep. This is associated with high levels of carbon dioxide in the blood, known as nocturnal hypoventilation.

Meet the team
How to get referred
What you need to do before your appointment
What you need to bring to your appointment
What happens on the day of clinic
How to find us

Meet the team 

 The Harefield Hospital NIV clinic is run by a leading team of specialists in chest and respiratory conditions: 

  • Dr Amanda Sathyapala (previously Natanek), consultant respiratory physician 
  • Dr Samantha Kon, consultant chest physician 
  • Dr Shirmila Withana, consultant-grade associate specialist
  • Dr Dawar Rizavi, speciality doctor
  • Ms Sharyl James, clinical nurse specialist

Our team cares for patients with problems related to: 

  • Chronic Type 2 respiratory failure due to chronic lung disease, chest wall diseases, or neuromuscular conditions such as motor neurone disease
  • Obesity hypoventilation syndrome 

The NIV clinic runs as a day case service on the following days:

  • Monday - Thursday (a.m. and p.m.) - Ms Sharyl James 
  • Tuesday (p.m.), Wednesday (p.m.), and Thursday (a.m.) - Dr Dawar Rizavi 
  • Tuesday (p.m.), Wednesday (p.m.) and Thursday (a.m) - Dr Amanda Sathyapala 
  • Tuesday - Friday (p.m.) - Dr Shirmila Withana 
  • Friday (a.m. and p.m.) - Dr Samantha Kon 

How to get referred

We accept referrals from: 

  • GPs
  • consultants 
  • community healthcare professionals including respiratory physiotherapists, and nurse specialists.

Letters should be emailed to Dr Amanda Sathyapala or Dr Samantha Kon via HarefieldhomeNIV@nhs.net or faxed to 018950 828 731. 

What you need to do before your clinic appointment

Prior to your clinic appointment, you may be asked to do a sleep study at home using a TOSCA device or a simpler pulse oximeter device (both measure oxygen levels during the night), which we will ask you to collect from the respiratory physiology department at Harefield Hospital. Watch this video on how to use a TOSCA device. 

What you need to bring to your appointment 

Please bring with you a list of your current medications and, if you can, list the medical conditions and/or procedures, including any operations, you have had in the past. We also recommend being accompanied by a partner, spouse or carer.  

What happens on the day of the clinic

On the day of your appointment you will be first seen by a healthcare assistant or nurse on the ward who will take your temperature, height and weight, alongside any blood and/or breathing tests that you might require. You will then be seen by one of our consultants or a nurse specialist, who will review the results of any tests and discuss a plan of treatment. If this is your first visit, your appointment may span two to four hours. 

If you have been prescribed a ventilator, it is likely you will be given this on the same day and shown how to use it. 

How to find us

Appointments for the Harefield Hospital NIV service are held on the Cherry Tree ward located on 1st floor Harefield Hospital, Hill End Road, Harefield, Middlesex, UB9 6HJ. 


Telephone: +44 (0)1895 823 737 ext. 85658. 

Useful videos 

How to use a TOSCA device for monitoring oxygen levels during the night