Respiratory Care Week is an annual event that recognizes the essential work and dedication of respiratory care professionals around the globe—from clinicians and pulmonologists to nurses, respiratory therapists (RTs), and home caregivers.
This year, respiratory care week runs from October 23 through the 29th. Coinciding with this event is Healthy Lung Month, which, as you may have guessed, is no coincidence.
What Is Healthy Lung Month?
Recognized by the American Lung Association, Healthy Lung Month is when healthcare professionals, patients, and community members come together to share and learn new information about respiratory medicine and health.
Be an Advocate This October
Breathing is not something we should take for granted. Yet, experiencing shortness of breath, wheezing, chronic cough, or mucus buildup can make it challenging to live independently.
Therefore, in addition to celebrating the incredible individuals who dedicate their lives to helping patients find relief from chronic lung diseases, all month long, we have the unique opportunity to do our part by spreading awareness about respiratory health.
Sharing resources on protecting our lungs while educating our friends and family on effective ways to manage their symptoms allows us to make a significant impact and help others live a better quality of life.
How To Get Involved
Whether you are a patient or prescriber or know someone living with a lung condition, there are many ways you can get involved and show support for lung health and respiratory therapists in your community.
The American Association for Respiratory Care provides a community-based platform and guide for you to share stories, show gratitude, and find resources to post on social media.
Visit their website to find more ideas, and remember to follow their hashtag, #RCWEEK22, to stay connected to news and events this week.
SmartVest Lung Health Resources
We wanted to do our part in helping spread awareness this month. Therefore, we’ve compiled a few resources below for you to read and share with others!
SmartVest Videos and Tutorials
Subscribe to our YouTube channel for videos on using SmartVest in a hospital setting or home. In addition, our “Ask a Pulmonologist” video series walks you through how to talk to your clinician about starting airway clearance therapy.
Breathing Exercises & Techniques
Did you know that specific breathing techniques can help strengthen the muscles needed for your lungs to function? Learn 3 practical breathing exercises that help address shortness of breath symptoms related to your condition.
In addition to breathing techniques, we publish many articles on airway clearance. Stay connected to our blog for new studies, healthy living tips, and COPD and bronchiectasis resources.
Patient Care Advocates
With so many online resources available, sometimes, you’d rather speak with an actual person. For example, suppose you have questions about finding relief from your chronic lung condition or want to learn more about the benefits of using SmartVest. In that case, we invite you to schedule a chat with one of our Patient Care Advocates, who are also Respiratory Therapists.
Also call them directly at 1.855.528.5690. Our team will answer your questions and provide guidance so you feel confident taking the next step toward breathing easier.
Supporting Our Respiratory Care Professionals
At Electromed, our dedicated teams offer unrivaled support and are committed to helping patients and providers. From prescription support and reimbursement to at-home training, our teams work closely to help you navigate airway clearance therapy.
Did you know? Some of our outstanding employees are also registered respiratory therapists, which means they play a vital role in the success of all SmartVest users.
What Do Respiratory Therapists Do?
A registered respiratory therapist (RRT) is a healthcare professional with advanced training in pulmonary medicine. RRTs care for patients with lung conditions that restrict their ability to breathe and break up mucus properly. Conditions may include asthma, cystic fibrosis, COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), or bronchiectasis.
Their responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Helping patients learn and perform breathing exercises
- Training patients on therapy techniques
- Assisting patients in managing airway clearance devices
Our respiratory therapists provide SmartVest users with one-on-one training, guidance, and ongoing support. The end goal is to help patients feel confident to perform SmartVest therapy at home, independently.
By extending their vast knowledge and expertise, they work efficiently with clinicians and give patients and caregivers peace of mind knowing their father, mother, or child
is in the best, most caring hands possible.
Meet Our RRTs
Before you go, we wanted to take a moment to introduce you to a few RRTs we have the pleasure of working with and why they love their line of work.
“It is not only an honor but a privilege to be educated and licensed in the field of Respiratory Care. After working in direct patient care in a hospital for many years, teaching Respiratory for a local college and then transitioning to DME and being able to focus patients on a specific therapy like the SmartVest is rewarding. All of this combined has helped me to better educate patients virtually when it comes to their lung health and how they will most certainly benefit from the SmartVest. I am proud to be in a field that is continually progressing and making people’s lives better.”
Lori Jessico, RRT
Patient Care Specialist
“I worked in patient care for years and, like many respiratory therapists, got to know my frequent fliers very well. I was even with many of them when they lost their battle to their pulmonary diseases. I wish that I knew then what I know now about the prevalence of bronchiectasis, especially within our COPD population. As an Electromed employee, my mission as a respiratory therapist has shifted. Rather than saving lives in the hospital, I am helping to change lives by keeping patients at home, reduce exacerbations, and improve their quality of life.”
Christina Nicklaus, MHA, BS, RRT
Clinical Education Manager
Our team takes great pride in being an advocate for patients living with bronchiectasis, COPD, or other chronic lung conditions. Here’s what a few patients had to say about working with our team:
“I cannot speak highly enough of the company AND the positive improvement to my health and day to day life. Call them. Their generosity with me moved me to tears. And I am not a crier. So in a nutshell, call them. My life improved significantly with this machine. The SmartVest has kept me out of the hospital as well.” -Pamela
“The person who helped me get set up [with SmartVest] was a Respiratory Therapist. He spent time explaining every facet and setting up a program my doctor had prescribed as to how often and how many times a day to use it. My SmartVest has been a huge factor in staying well. Thanks, SmartVest, for improving my quality of life!” -Joyce
Happy Respiratory Care Week
We invite you to join us this month in honoring the individuals who help patients manage their chronic lung conditions! Get involved and make a difference!