Respiratory Care Faculty Visit China for Collaboration, Education

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

November 9, 2016

In September, Jie Li, MS, RRT-NPS- ACCS, assistant professor, and Constance Mussa, PhD, RRT-NPS, assistant professor, both in the Department of Cardiopulmonary Sciences in the College of Health Sciences, traveled to China to share some new concepts in respiratory care and observe how it is practiced in that country.

Li and Mussa visited Chinese hospitals on the trip, as well as presented at the 2016 Annual Congress of the Chinese Thoracic Society, which had 8,233 attendees this year, and lectured at continuing education conferences at several universities. They were invited by the Chinese Respiratory Disease Society, West China Medical University, Chengdu University and the Second Yixing Hospital

“I was absolutely amazed at the level of efficiency of the hospitals we visited in China, especially given the limited resources available,” says Mussa. “At every health care facility we visited, the clinicians were eager to hear about best practices in the United States relevant to various aspects of respiratory care.”

Respiratory care as a profession has been established in the U.S. for more than 60 years; however, it’s still in an embryonic stage of development in many other countries in Europe, the Middle East and East Asia. Li and Mussa found physicians and nurses welcoming of their suggestions when they were invited to consult on respiratory care managment for a patient at Second Yixing Hospital.

They also visited West China Medical University, one of the top three medical universities in China and the first to establish a respiratory care program. The university is the only one to offer master’s and doctoral degrees in respiratory care in China. Li and Mussa engaged with faculty, staff and students in a discussion of the current state and future of respiratory care in the U.S.

“At the end of our stay, our Chinese colleagues commented that our presentations at regional and national conferences in China provided valuable information that will help improve their practice,” says Mussa. “Based on my experience and the feedback from our Chinese colleagues, I would encourage the replication of this model of collaboration in other countries in conjunction with virtual collaboration to promote knowledge sharing and enhance respiratory care practitioners’ skills globally.”