Respiratory therapists and other clinicians gathered with patients and caregivers for the third annual Respiratory Patient Advocacy Summit last night and the event served as a great way to shine a light on the needs of people living with chronic lung disease.
The session began with a talk by Grace Anne Dorney Koppel, who herself suffers from COPD and is now president of the COPD Foundation. This year’s Congress keynote speaker, Claire Wineland, followed with a presentation on living with cystic fibrosis and patient advocacy.
Sharman Lamka, president and co-founder of The FACES Foundation, took the podium to talk about the new National Respiratory Patient Advocacy Award, which is being cosponsored by the AARC and The FACES Foundation to honor outstanding respiratory therapists in the area of chronic lung disease care.
This new national award grew out of a program started by Lamka in 2006 to recognize the compassionate care RTs provided to her husband, Phil, who passed away from interstitial lung disease.
She announced this year’s winner and two additional honorees during the Summit.
The 2017 National Respiratory Patient Advocacy Award went to Christine Hartling, RRT-NPS, CPFT, of Utah. Also recognized were Jeff Cain, RRT, of Michigan and Jamie Causey, BSRT, RRT, AE-C, of North Carolina.
A moderated roundtable on patient advocacy led by representatives from the Alpha-1 Foundation, Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation, American Lung Association of the Midland States, COPD Foundation, and Pulmonary Hypertension Association rounded out the event.
The Summit was sponsored by Platinum Sponsors Sunovion and Boehringer Ingelheim; Silver Sponsors Gilead, Mylan, and Vertex; and Contributing Sponsor The FACES Foundation.
The ARCF hosted its fifth annual fundraiser yesterday evening, and the event was attended by a record crowd.
The Night on the Plaza took place in the Lucas Oil Plaza Room at Indy’s state-of-the-art sports mecca, Lucas Oil Stadium, home of the Indianapolis Colts. Guests had the chance to network with colleagues, enjoy some great music and food, and get in the running for a number of fantastic prizes.
The fundraiser drew to a close with a recognition of ARCF donors and updates on the role the ARCF plays in advancing the art and science of the respiratory care profession.
The ARCF fundraiser was sponsored by Vapotherm.
Congress-goers filled the Sagamore Ballroom this morning for an awards ceremony sponsored by Teleflex. The list of winners read like a who’s who in respiratory care and their accomplishments made everyone proud to be a member of the profession —
The following will be recognized in a separate awards ceremony to take place during the Annual Business Meeting tomorrow morning. Congratulations to:
The awards ceremony held this morning culminated with presentation of the Association’s highest honor, the Jimmy A. Young Medal. This year’s Medal went to long-time RT researcher Robert Chatburn, MHHS, RRT-NPS, FAARC, who has spent his career delving into the inner workings of mechanical ventilation and other topics that lie at the heart of the respiratory care profession.
Chatburn has published more than 120 papers in peer review journals and has presented another 200+ abstracts at meetings held around the world.
Among his most noteworthy work has been the creation of a taxonomy of mechanical ventilation that’s now included in most of the major respiratory care textbooks. It is also the official system used by ECRI in reports comparing ventilator performance characteristics.
“Rob’s most significant contribution to the profession, without question, relates to his passion around standardized nomenclature for ventilator modes and his taxonomy of modes,” says Respiratory Care Editor Dean Hess, PhD, RRT, FAARC.
The Jimmy A. Young Medal is awarded annually to a member of the profession who has exceeded all expectations for meritorious service to the AARC and advancement of the respiratory care profession.
Read much more about the life and times of Rob Chatburn and the value he has added to our profession in this article in the September issue of AARC Times.
The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute released its long-awaited COPD National Action Plan at a press event in May and the AARC was on hand for the big reveal. Attendees at this morning’s Awards Ceremony learned much more about this groundbreaking plan and the major role the AARC played in its development.
The document is expected to facilitate a coordinated national approach for addressing unmet needs in the area of COPD and focuses on raising public awareness; increasing the skills and education of providers; encouraging increased data collection, analysis, and sharing; and improving the collaboration between federal and nonfederal partners as they translate the recommendations in the plan into research and public health initiatives.
“The AARC was pleased to play a role in the development of the COPD National Action Plan,” says AARC Executive Director Thomas Kallstrom, MBA, RRT, FAARC. “We encourage respiratory therapists everywhere to read the document and share it with their colleagues involved in the care and treatment of people with COPD.”
Claire Wineland doesn’t remember a time when she didn’t have cystic fibrosis. Diagnosed as an infant, she has lived with the condition her whole life, and even though she just turned 20 this year, she’s accumulated more insight into what it means to struggle through the adversity of a serious illness than most of us will amass in a lifetime.
In her keynote address yesterday morning, she noted that she doesn’t remember a time when respiratory therapists were not a part of her life, and she told them how much she has appreciated them. “I was raised in hospitals. I have seen respiratory therapists pretty much every single day for years and years. I am incredibly honored to be here.”
Claire’s “living while dying” story really began in earnest when she was 13 years old and had to be placed in a medically-induced coma due to a severe infection she suffered following one of her surgeries. She got septic, and the infection attacked the weakest part of her body, her lungs. They put her on a ventilator and it didn’t work. They put her on an oscillator, and it did work. As her family and friends surrounded her with prayers and well wishes, doctors gave her only a 1% chance of survival.
When she awoke from the coma three weeks later, she and her parents decided to start a foundation aimed at helping other families going through similar situations and Claire’s Place Foundation was born. Because it took many months to recover, and people helped her family through that difficult time, she wanted to give back and help give people the resources they need to make life be what they want for themselves. “We have to care about the quality of life. It was important to me that I had a life worth living and was giving something of myself and my experience to other people,” she said.
Since then, Claire has dedicated her life to showing the world what it means to live with challenges and why it is so important to embrace them for the ability they have to channel inspiration. She urged the RTs in the audience to do that in their own lives as well, and to be a guiding light for their patients who may feel too overwhelmed by their conditions to see how adversity can be the gateway to opportunity. She said that patients want to grow and learn and make something of themselves.
“I am here today to help change the conversation of how patients are treated. Please encourage them to make a life for themselves, to have solid ground. If there is a takeaway today, I hope you know that people who suffer most in life actually have the most to give.”
This year’s Zenith Awards went to Aerogen, Fisher & Paykel Healthcare Inc., Monaghan Medical Corporation, Philips Healthcare, Tri-anim, and Vyaire Medical.
All of these companies were selected by AARC members based on the quality of their products, accessibility of their sales staff, responsiveness, service record, truth in advertising, and support of the respiratory care profession.
The AARC recognized nine outstanding members with its Fellow of the American Association for Respiratory Care (FAARC) designation during this morning’s Awards Ceremony —
All of these members have added immeasurable value to respiratory care in their respective areas of expertise, and we thank them for their service to our profession.
Meilan K. Han, MD, MS, will take the podium tomorrow morning to talk about COPD, the people living with this chronic lung condition, and the clinicians who are charged with their care.
The session will cover the many obstacles that still exist for those with the nation’s third largest killer and what can be done to overcome them. The role of the respiratory therapist will figure heavily in the discussion.
Says Dr. Han, “The burden of COPD in the U.S. continues to grow. However, while progress has been made in diagnostics and therapeutics, improvements in quality of life for patients will depend on the actual implementation of care and an individual patient’s access to that care. This talk will address the challenges and potential solutions to improving care for COPD patients, particularly the evolving roles of respiratory therapists who are increasingly central to the care of COPD patients.”
Dr. Han is an associate professor in the department of internal medicine and medical director of the Women’s Respiratory Health Program at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Her research interests encompass both COPD and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and she is an investigator for several NIH clinical trials, including the COPDGene study and the Subpopulations and Intermediate Outcome Measures In COPD study. She is particularly interested in the identification of unique disease subtypes using advanced imaging techniques, with the goal of advancing the development of personalized medicine.
Respiratory care runs on technology, and our 2017 Exhibit Hall has all the latest equipment from the top names in the business.
Congress-goers are getting the chance to see the full range of advances available to respiratory care departments, and the best part is, many vendors are offering special deals just for attendees that could make a big dent in or even completely cover the cost of their attendance at the meeting.
The annual Open Forum is always one of the most enlightening and engaging features of the Congress and this year will be no different, as investigators present their original research studies in 12 Poster and Discussion sessions, two Posters Only sessions, and a prestigious Editors’ Choice session that will showcase the top abstracts accepted to the Forum this year.
It all kicked off today, with Congress-goers flocking to the sessions to learn more about what their colleagues have been studying over the past year.
The Open Forum is supported by an unrestricted educational grant from Monaghan.
We’d like to send a big thank-you to our 2017 Corporate Partners: CareFusion, Masimo, Medtronic, Monaghan, Philips Respironics, Draeger, Maquet, Teleflex, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, AstraZeneca, Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals, ResMed, and Fisher & Paykel Healthcare.
They’re all in Indianapolis this week to network with respiratory therapists visiting the Exhibit Hall.
All of these companies comprise best-in-class organizations interested in supporting the goals and work of the Association. The program provides respiratory care providers with information, insights, and innovative approaches to improve performance and advance the health of their patients.
Our annual Sputum Bowl competition is the place where respiratory therapists go to challenge their knowledge in the profession, and the national event began this morning.
The competition is expected to be fierce, with teams facing off to see who knows the most about topics in respiratory care ranging from mechanical ventilation to aerosol drug delivery devices.
Following two days of preliminary rounds, finalists will go head to head in an exciting Finals Night on Friday evening, where special features like “Ask the Expert,” “Risk/Reward,” “Ask the Posse,” and “Video Visuals” will amp up the excitement.
This year’s theme is “The Roaring ‘20s,” and the half-time show promises to be amazing. Mark Toland, the top-booked mind reader in the U.S. and Canada who has appeared on NBC, WGN, and FOX, will wow the audience with his ability to combine comedy, magic, and mind reading into a whopping good time for all. This is one Congress extracurricular activity that no one should miss, so if you are in Indy, get there early and get a good seat!
The Sputum Bowl is supported by an unrestricted educational grant from Medtronic.
AARC-TV is up and running throughout the convention center, where they’ll be documenting many of the activities taking place and talking with Congress-goers about the experiences they are having at the premiere meeting of the year in the respiratory care profession. AARC-TV hosts will also be in the Big Ideas Theater in the AARC Booth to interview some of the leading presenters at the meeting, and we’ll be showcasing those videos on AARC.org throughout the coming months.