AARC Congress 2018

  Dec. 4–7, 2018

  Las Vegas, NV

Tuesday Gazette

Patient voices are heard at 4th annual summit

Sharman Lamka and Tonya Loftin

Sharman Lamka (left) presents the National Respiratory Patient Advocacy Award to Tonya Loftin.

For the fourth year in a row, the AARC hosted a Respiratory Patient Advocacy Summit the day before the Congress and this year’s event drew participation from a wide range of RTs, patients, caregivers, and others who came together to learn from each other and share stories and concerns.

COPD patient Len Geiger got things started with a presentation called “COPD Management: A Patient Perspective,” providing those in attendance with an up-close-and-personal look at what it’s like to live with this chronic lung disease.

Steve Van Wormer followed with a talk titled, “Pulmonary Hypertension: A Caregiver’s Perspective.” Van Wormer shared his personal experiences caring for a loved one suffering from this often devastating and hard to treat condition.

The Summit also saw the presentation of the second annual National Respiratory Patient Advocacy Award by Sharman Lamka, president and co-founder of The FACES Foundation. The award, which is a joint effort between The FACES Foundation and the AARC, went to Tonya Loftin RRT, director of population health outcomes for Eventa, LLC. Kurt Riek RRT, a respiratory clinical specialist with Michigan Medicine-CS Mott Children's Hospital was named a finalist.

The Summit wrapped up with a great Foundation Roundtable where representatives from the ARDS Foundation, Physician-Patient Alliance for Health and Safety, Alliance for Patient Access, and Cystic Fibrosis Foundation gathered in a lively back and forth session aimed at shining a light on how patients, caregivers, and respiratory therapists can combine their efforts to better tackle the issues facing people with chronic lung diseases.

Our Platinum Sponsor for the Summit was Boehringer Ingelheim. Sunovion served as our Gold Sponsor and Gilead, GSK, and Genentech served as our Silver Sponsors. Contributing Sponsors were Vertex, Actelion, and The Faces Foundation.

Back to Gazette Home

ARCF Fundraiser offers inside look at the mob

Congress-goers gathered at the Mob Museum in Downtown Vegas yesterday evening to learn more about how organized crime figured into the early days of the city and raise vital funds for the ARCF at the same time.

Attendees were wowed by the private showing, which included exhibits ranging from a Prohibition-era speakeasy to a crime lab depicting how law enforcement analyzes forensic evidence to build its case against criminals.

The sixth annual ARCF Fundraiser Gala also included the chance for attendees to win some big prizes.

Teri Miller MEd RRT CPFT went home with a 4 day/3 night trip to any location in the U.S., Renee Bartle BS RRT won complimentary registration to AARC Congress 2019, Marianna Paussa RRT received an iPad, and Jodi Jaeger BS RRT RRT-NPS won an Apple Watch.

After everyone finished touring the great exhibits in the museum, ARCF leaders presented a brief update on Foundation activities and how they are helping to advance the profession. The important role ARCF donors play in that process was recognized as well.

The ARCF fundraiser was sponsored by Vapotherm.

Back to Gazette Home

Standout professionals honored during Awards Ceremony

Richard H Kallet

Michael Amato (left) presents the Forrest M Bird Award to Richard Kallet.

This morning’s Awards Ceremony was the place to recognize top performers in the profession, as everyone from students who are already excelling in the field to researchers conducting the studies we need to validate our practice were honored for their accomplishments —

  • Forrest M Bird Lifetime Scientific Achievement Award, Richard H Kallet MS RRT, FAARC FCCM
  • Thomas L Petty MD Invacare Award for Excellence in Home Respiratory Care, Brooke Yeager McSwain MSc RRT
  • Hector Leon Garza MD Achievement Award for Excellence in International Respiratory Care, Robert M Kacmarek PhD RRT FAARC
  • Dr. Charles H Hudson Award for Cardiopulmonary Public Health, Suzan Michelle Collins BSRT RRT
  • Mike West MBA RRT Patient Education Achievement Award, DeDe Gardner DrPh RRT FAARC FCCP
  • NBRC Gary A Smith Educational Award for Innovation in Education Achievement: Samantha Davis MS RRT-NPS AE-C CHSE
  • Mitchell A Baran Achievement Award for Clinical Excellence in Aerosol and Airway Clearance Therapies, Arzu Ari PhD RRT PT CPFT FAARC
  • BOMA Award: Mike Davis
  • Philips Respironics Fellowship in Mechanical Ventilation, Ivan G Lee MSc RRT RRT-NPS RRT-ACCS RPSGT
  • Charles W Serby COPD Research Fellowship, Gail S Drescher MA RRT CTTS
  • Vyaire Fellowship for Neonatal and Pediatric Therapists, Robert Gillette MD
  • Jeri Esierman RRT Professional Education Research Fellowship, Aya Matsushima RRT BSRT
  • William F Miller MD Award Postgraduate Education Recognition Award, Craig R. Wheeler MS RRT-NPS
  • NBRC Gareth B Gish Memorial Award, Kevin P Collins MS RRT RPFT AE-C
  • Morton B Duggan Jr. Memorial Education Recognition Award, Kimberly Stokes RRT
  • NBRC William W Burgin Jr. MD and Robert M Lawrence MD Education Recognition Award, Joshua Lyons BSRT RRT
  • Jimmy A Young Memorial Education Recognition Award, Alex Lopez
  • FAARCs: Ariel Berlinski MD FAARC, Ricky W Bowen MPM RRT RCP FAARC, Brian Cayko MBA RRT FAARC, Mark S Rogers BS RCP RRT RRT-NPS FAARC, Katie Sabato MS RRT RRT-NPS FAARC, Wadie Williams Jr., MS RRT CerAT MEMS(S) FAARC, William V Wojciechowski MS RRT FAARC
  • ARCF Fundraiser Reception – Sole Sponsorship Award: Vapotherm
  • Support of International Fellowship: AARC House of Delegates, Drager, Teleflex, NBRC, AARC
  • International Fellows: Sangit Kasaju, Neelum Singh, Liang Xu, Julie Essiam
  • Mallinckrodt Best Paper Award by Best First Author: Jeffrey Bilharz RRT RRT-NPS
  • Drager-Shreyas Roy, MD Memorial Literary Award: Richard H Kallet MS RRT FAARC FCCM
  • Specialty Practitioners of the Year: Adult Acute Care, Thomas Piraino RRT FCSRT; Education, Ellen A. Becker PhD RRT RRT-NPS RPFT AE-C FAARC; Neonatal-Pediatrics, Ryan M Sharkey MSc RRT RRT-NPS; Respiratory Care Management, Kim Bennion MsHS RRT CHC; Post-Acute Care, Ronda Z Bradley MS RRT FAARC; Respiratory Diagnostics, Jeffrey Haynes, RRT RPFT FAARC; Sleep, Peter Griffin Allen BSRC RRT RRT-NPS RRT-SDS RPSGT RST; Surface & Air Transport, Tom Pietrantonio BSRT RRT RRT-ACCS NREMT
  • Zenith Awards: Monaghan Medical, Aerogen, Philips, Fisher & Paykel, Draeger Medical, Tri-Anim Health Services
  • CoARC - Ralph Kendall MD Outstanding Site Visitor of the Year Award: Marby McKinney MEd RRT-NPS AE-C; Joseph Coyle MD
  • NBRC - Albert H Andrews Jr. MD Memorial Award: Neal H Cohen MD MPH MS
  • Life Membership: Frank R Salvatore Jr. MBA RRT FAARC, Shelley C Mishoe PhD FAARC FASAHP
  • Honorary Membership: Grace Anne Dorney Koppel MA JD
  • Jimmy A Young Medal: Trudy Watson BS RRT FAARC

The following will be recognized in a separate awards ceremony to take place during the Annual Business Meeting tomorrow morning. Congratulations to:

  • Summit Award for Outstanding State Society: Florida Society for Respiratory Care
  • Outstanding Affiliate Contributor: Raymond Pisani BS RRT RRT-ACCS FAARC
  • Jerry Bridgers Delegate of the Year: Lanny Inabnit MSc RRT RRT-NPS RRT-ACCS
  • Bill Lamb Award for Community Service: Leonard Picha RRT CPFT

Back to Gazette Home

Trudy Watson honored with Jimmy A Young Medal

Trudy Watson

Trudy Watson receives the Jimmy A Young Medal from Sam Giordano.

Trudy Watson BS RRT FAARC took center stage at this morning’s Awards Ceremony, as she received the Association’s highest honor, the Jimmy A Young Medal, for her years of service to the profession.

Despite a busy career in respiratory care and respiratory care education, Watson has always found time to devote to her professional organizations. She spent a number of years as an Illinois delegate to the AARC House of Delegates, and after serving one term as a member of the AARC Board of Directors, along with two terms each as vice-president and secretary, she was elected AARC president-elect in 1994. She spent much of her year as AARC president focusing on issues surrounding the sponsorship of agencies for programmatic accreditation.

Sam Giordano MBA RRT FAARC, who was AARC executive director at the time, credits her with playing an instrumental role in reorganizing our education accreditation system, noting that, “The result of her efforts and the efforts of others was to consolidate accreditation services between two agencies, and facilitate transition to a higher entry-level education.”

Watson also chaired the Task Force on Restructuring — a two year effort that resulted in a number of changes in the way the AARC is organized — and worked with CoARC and the Lambda Beta Society as well.

But her crowning achievement came with the creation of the AARC’s Virtual Museum, a project she spearheaded with the support of former AARC historian, Bob Weilacher RRT FAARC. The Virtual Museum officially launched in 2014 and serves as a repository for historical photos and other documents relating to the profession.

“The museum was her brainchild because she always felt every respiratory therapist needed to know what came before them,” says long-time friend and colleague Colleen Schabacker BA RRT FAARC. “She would say, ‘It’s our history!’ The museum would have never proceeded if it weren’t for her dedication, tenacity, and sheer drive to make it happen.”

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 more about Trudy Watson and her amazing career in this article in the October edition of AARC Times.

Back to Gazette Home

ZDoggMD entertains and enlightens

Dr. Zubin Damania

Dr. Zubin Damania during the keynote address.

Dr. Zubin Damania — aka ZDogg MD — addressed Congress-goers in a keynote address this morning that left everyone laughing and thinking at the same time.

With his special brand of humor, he covered a wide range of topics that affect everyone working in the health care arena, from the struggles we all face to deliver compassionate care to the challenges inherent in ensuring medical professionals work together to keep the future of our health care system bright.

“Half of the patients in hospitals don’t need to be there,” Dr. Damania told the capacity crowd. “We gotta change the system … focus on prevention. We can transform compliance with personalized care.”

He emphasized the special role respiratory therapists play in the nation’s medical system as well, noting RTs had come to his rescue on the job many times and stressing to the therapists in the crowd that “It’s about time y’all got cred for everything you do.”

Dr. Damania urged his audience to focus on reinstating the human touch in health care, saying that caregiver-patient trust is sacred and that working in the health care field is a calling. “We know what’s right for our patients. We need to re-personalize medicine,” he said.

He underlined the importance of RTs to that mission. “I need you guys on the front lines. We need more leaders on the front lines,” said Dr. Damania. “That’s why we need the AARC. It starts with us!”

Dr. Zubin Damania is the founder of a direct primary care clinic in Downtown Las Vegas called Turntable Health. Prior to establishing the clinic, he practiced as a hospitalist at Stanford University. He has dealt with his own burnout by performing standup comedy for medical audiences around the world.

Back to Gazette Home

Zenith Awards go to top companies

Our 2018 Zenith Awards went to Monaghan Medical Corporation, Aerogen, Philips, Fisher & Paykel, Draeger Medical, and Tri-anim Health Services.

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.

Back to Gazette Home

2018 class of FAARCs represent the best of the best

2019 AARC Fellows

2019 AARC Fellows.

Seven outstanding members of the respiratory care profession were recognized with the AARC’s Fellow of the American Association for Respiratory Care (FAARC) designation during this morning’s Awards Ceremony —

  • Ariel Berlinski MD FAARC
  • Ricky W Bowen MPM RRT RCP FAARC
  • Brian Cayko MBA RRT FAARC
  • Mark S Rogers BS RCP RRT-NPS FAARC
  • Katie Sabato MS RRT RRT-NPS FAARC
  • Wadie Williams Jr. MS RRT CerAT MEMS(S) FAARC
  • William V Wojciechowski MS RRT FAARC

We thank all of these members for the major contributions they have made to their respective areas of practice in respiratory care.

Back to Gazette Home

Thomas L Petty Memorial Lecture — Everyone Needs Oxygen

Jerry Krishnan

Jerry Krishnan.

The title of this lecture might elicit a “duh” from some readers, but Jerry Krishnan MD PhD believes too many clinicians really don’t give the need for oxygen the careful attention it deserves when it comes to patients with chronic respiratory conditions.

In tomorrow’s Petty Lecture, he will discuss the evidence supporting the use of supplemental oxygen among these patients, go over a new consortium in the works to make sure more patients are correctly assessed for oxygen need during hospital to home transfers, and suggest ways in which respiratory therapists can get more involved in that process.

“Use of supplemental oxygen at home in individuals with severe resting room air hypoxemia is one of the very few evidence-based treatments that saves lives in people with COPD,” says Dr. Krishnan. “How often is life-saving home oxygen prescribed? Used as prescribed? Who is the SHERLOCK consortium and what are they proposing to do?”

Congress-goers will hear the answers to these questions and more!

Jerry Krishnan is a professor of medicine and public health, and associate vice chancellor for population health sciences, at the University of Illinois College of Medicine. He is a founding investigator and chair of the Steering Committee for the COPD Outcomes-based Network for Clinical Effectiveness and Research Translation and has published studies on topics ranging from asthma and COPD to peer-to-peer coaching for the use of supplemental oxygen equipment.

Back to Gazette Home

The Exhibit Hall has it all!

AARC Congress Exhibit Hall

Opening the AARC Congress 2018 Exhibit Hall.

Respiratory care is driven by technology, and Congress-goers are viewing the latest whiz-bang innovations in this year’s Exhibit Hall. Every top vendor in the business is in Vegas this week, and they are all ready to share the evidence-based research supporting their devices and services.

Everything from mechanical ventilators to airway clearance devices and more is available for attendees to see, touch, and in some cases, even test out for themselves.

New this year are “New Exhibitor” emblems, which have been placed on the floor in front of booths for vendors who are exhibiting at Congress for the first time, and a New Product Showcase on the Congress website featuring some of the new products our exhibitors have in their booths. 

Even if you aren’t at the meeting, you can check out these new products in the Showcase. If you are there, look for the “New Product” emblems on the floor in front of booths featuring these products.

Many of the vendors are offering special meeting discounts for deals made onsite too, which means some attendees will end up covering all or most of the cost of their trip to Vegas this week just by taking advantage of those savings.

Back to Gazette Home

Open Forum to feature original research

AARC Open Forum

An Open Forum presenter discusses their original research.

Research drives evidence-based respiratory care, and the annual Open Forum is the place to see the research that’s being done by respiratory therapists. Over the next three days 277 abstracts will be featured in 14 Poster Discussion sessions and 2 Posters Only sessions.

The premiere event of the Forum, the annual Editors’ Choice session showcasing the top 10 abstracts submitted this year, will take place on Thursday. During this session, presenters will report the important findings of their studies.

The Open Forum is supported by an unrestricted educational grant from Monaghan.

Back to Gazette Home

Thank-you 2018 partners

We’d like to send a big thank-you to all of our 2018 Corporate Partners: Vyaire Medical, Masimo, Medtronic, Monaghan, Philips, Draeger, Getinge, Teleflex, Boehringer Ingelheim, AstraZeneca, Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals, ResMed, Fisher & Paykel Healthcare, and Sunovion.

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.

Back to Gazette Home

A new era begins for the Sputum Bowl®

AARC Sputum Bowl

Minnesota takes on Colorado in the students-only Sputum Bowl.

This year marks the beginning of a new era for our iconic respiratory knowledge competition. For the first time, it will be students-only Bowl, with teams from across the country who are ready to show they have the right stuff in preliminary and final rounds.

The Bowl kicked off today and will continue tomorrow, with a Finals round scheduled for Thursday afternoon. Following the Finals, everyone will be invited to gather for the Sputum Bowl® Award Ceremony and Networking Reception featuring a great show by Mark Eddie.

Part musician, part comedian, and all entertainer, Eddie will energize the crowd with his guitar, signature voice, and hilarious tribute to the classic rock, R&B, hip hop, country, and pop stars of our time. With great impressions of everyone from Neil Diamond to Dave Matthews, he spans the generations, and his witty point of view on everything from pop culture to parenting has something for everyone too.

The Sputum Bowl® is supported by an unrestricted educational grant from Medtronic.

Back to Gazette Home

AARC-TV is in the house!

AARC-TV is ramping up to interview attendees and speakers alike about the educational opportunities being offered at AARC Congress 2018, and we’ll be featuring some of these video right here in the Online Congress Gazette. Look for them on the front page.

Back to Gazette Home