Lonny Ashworth, professor in the School of Allied Health Sciences Department of Respiratory Care, received the International Council for Respiratory Care’s Toshihiko Koga, MD International Medal at the 2015 American Association of Respiratory Care International Congress in Tampa, Fla. on Nov. 7-10.
The Toshihiko Koga, MD International Medal is named in honor and memory of Toshihiko Koga, one of the founding members of the International Council for Respiratory Care and one of Ashworth’s friends and partners in the field of respiratory care.
Ashworth and Koga’s friendship and partnership began in 1994 when Koga was visiting Boise as part of a fellowship. Through their relationship, Ashworth began traveling to Japan in 1995 as part of the International Exchange Visit Programme for Respiratory Care Professionals to provide training in adult mechanical ventilation.
Since 1995, Ashworth has conducted more than 130 workshops in Japan on topics such as: use of graphic analysis during mechanical ventilation, pressure control ventilation, and withdrawal of ventilatory support. These workshops have benefitted several thousand physicians, nurses, physical therapists, and clinical engineers by increasing their knowledge base and establishing the use of protocols in Japan. Additionally, Ashworth has trained several of these individuals to provide similar workshops.
As a result of Ashworth’s work in Japan, six Japanese health care professionals have come to Boise State to become registered respiratory therapists and return to Japan with their bachelor’s degree to teach.
“Our department has had the benefit of Lonny’s expertise in the area of mechanical ventilation with his international work. In Japan, he works alongside some of their top physicians and healthcare providers to grow the knowledge base of both parties. He has brought diversity back to our program in Boise, encouraging international students to join our program on campus. Our students have benefited from these experiences that they would not have had without the long-standing relationships Lonny has developed internationally,” said Lutana Haan, department chair and assistant professor in the School of Allied Health Sciences Department of Respiratory Care.