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Nebraska team competes in National Sputum Bowl

The Nebraska sputum bowl team of Jeff Gonzalez and Rob Dickhaut from the Nebraska Heart Institute in Lincoln, Elisha Pueppka from Great Plains Regional Medical Center in North Platte, and Dave Patterson from Alegent Creighton Healthcare Lakeside Hospital, competed in the National Sputum Bowl Competition in Anaheim, CA.

Competing against teams from other states, the team fought its way back in the loser’s bracket. After three days of intense competition, the team was finally eliminated by the team from Pennsylvania, resulting in a fifth place finish and narrowly missing the final four.  They had a great time competing and meeting other therapists during the competition.

The champions from the Nebraska Society for Respiratory Care Sputum Bowl Competition, played at the annual state conference, are sponsored by the NSRC Board of Directors by providing their registration to the national AARC Congress meeting. The board would like to continue this support, but the number of sputum bowl teams competing in May has dropped significantly.

In order to sponsor a team, the team must actually compete for the right to represent our state at the national competition. Therefore, in order to continue sponsoring the champions, the board urges more teams to enroll for the May competition.

If you have any questions about the competition, please contact any person on the board or any of this year’s contestants. We look forward to your participation in what has been an historically fun and competitive game. It is truly a good time!

Nebraska's team
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Earn CEUs at Disney World conference

Focus Conferences offers the opportunity to earn continuing education credits to respiratory therapists and other medical professionals during a conference May 15-17, 2014 at Disney World in Orlando, FL.

Participants may register their partner for the conference activities (no CEUs) for $100. Activities offered include:

  • Free food and drink.
  • Focus comedy show.
  • Exhibit hall.
  • More than 70 lectures.
  • Two keynote speeches.
  • 5K race.
  • Door prizes and other surprises.

To register, go to www.

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NSRC membership contest winners announced

Winners have been announced for the AARC’s 2013 membership contest.

The new member winner was Venus Buck of Bellevue, NE.  The sponsor winner was Darcy O’Brien-Genrich.  Each won $150.00 for their efforts to increase NSRC membership.

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Write to Congress to support AARC-backed bill

HR 2619 would allow qualified respiratory therapists to provide education and instruction in disease self-management for Medicare patients diagnosed with certain chronic lung diseases. The legislation will allow physicians to utilize the respiratory therapists’ skill set to educate Medicare beneficiaries on how to recognize and reduce symptoms and triggers of their disease to prevent exacerbations that can lead to costly inpatient acute care.

Congressman John Lewis (D-GA) has introduced the AARC-backed Medicare Respiratory Therapist Access Act in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill, identified as HR 2619, will permit qualified respiratory therapists to provide self-management services to Medicare patients in physician’s offices.

“We have listened to the feedback from previous years, and are positioned to move the profession forward in an era of increasing healthcare needs,” said AARC Federal Government Affairs Chair Frank Salvatore. “We need your letters going to your U.S. Representatives, asking them to co-sponsor HR 2619.”

The bill has not yet been introduced in the Senate, but has backing there from a number of members who are also involved with the Congressional COPD Caucus. “We’re at a tipping point,” said Cheryl West, AARC Director of Government Affairs. She explained that letters help garner attention and they should be sent now to:

  • Your member of the House of Representatives asking for their co-sponsorship of HR 2619.
  • Your 2 Senators, asking them to support the introduction of a companion bill in the Senate.

AARC has an easy-to-use letter system online that allows you to quickly edit a suggested message in order to personalize it a bit, and then to easily send those emails on to your members of Congress. Click here to find the page. A Respiratory Therapists Alert with an update on the bill is at the top of the page; scroll down to find the form to send the letter.

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Photos show State Conference highlights

Lectures, discussions and activities highlighted the NSRC’s annual State Conference, held May 15-17 in Kearney.

Key events and education included the Advanced principles in Ventilation workshop, where patient-ventilator synchrony were discussed; as well Enhanced Ventilator Monitoring and Decision Support.  Lectures on pediatric emergencies and infant ventilation demonstrated techniques and technologies for those who deal with children.

The lymphatic system was discussed as part of an integrated approach to respiratory care, demonstrating the advanced skills of the respiratory therapists.  Respiratory care in rehabilitation was added as a different facet in what is considered traditional respiratory care.  Diaphragmatic pacing and safety for us and patients concluded the topics.

“Attendance was great and we got to see friends and peers that we hadn’t seen for a while,” said Jenny  Bush, NSRC board member.  She said Joe Rush, Vice President, was  in charge of the conference, “and he did a great job in getting speakers and generating activities with our vendor sponsors.”

Please check out the conference sponsors and Vendor Hall participants.

NSRC state conference
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