Kari Woodruff Neville
Senior Clinical Specialist
Member Since: 1997
Elections Committee Questions:
What do you see as the biggest challenge facing the AARC and what do you recommend to address it?
With the recent pandemic, visibility of Respiratory Therapists has increased significantly. Many members and non-members don’t feel they are represented as well as they should be by the media and the AARC. Many Respiratory Therapists do not understand what the AARC does for them, the relationship the AARC has with the NBRC, COARC, ARCF, and other like organizations. Our challenge is to change the negative perception of the organization, be more visible, be more transparent in the processes of the AARC, and help publicize exactly how the AARC benefits the profession. The board is already off to a good start on this, and I would like to continue to help move it along by increasing our resources toward public relations as well as providing tools to our affiliates to educate not only non-members but the public about our amazing profession.
Healthcare is changing more rapidly than ever. What do you feel is the main issue Respiratory Care Practitioners are facing, and what are the key solutions that you feel should be addressed to support our profession?
Respiratory Therapy has proven to be an integral part of the patient care team. Being among one of the newer professions on this health care team, it is still operating with a lower level of education therefore a lower level of respect in the health care setting. Moving toward bachelor’s degree minimum and the Advanced level practitioner will raise the bar for our profession. The board has already been working toward these goals as well as legislation that improves reimbursement for these higher-level practitioners. One of our problems in pushing forward is lack of membership which in turn means lack of representation when fighting for legislation. We not only need to move forward with tools to help educational institutions raise the level of education, but with increasing support through membership. I would like to work with to board and the membership committee on growing our membership, so we have more power to move these initiatives forward.
Your role as Director-at-large is to represent the general AARC membership. If given the opportunity to represent, how would you use your skills and experience to advance and advocate for the respiratory care profession?
I have always had a passion for growing our young leaders, and I believe this is key in moving the organization and profession forward. During my current term as Director at Large, I have been working on committees that have focused on engagement of this younger generation through transparency and increasing our social media presence. Previously, at the state level, I developed a student chapter that is still very involved in recruitment of new members as well as new leaders within the state of Colorado. Over the past few years, I have provided guidance to several states on how to start such programs. I would like to help more affiliates engage students at a level that will help with retention and growth of our future leaders. I would also like to help the AARC create ways to communicate more effectively to the public about the value of the respiratory care professional through an increased presence in social media and public media outlets.