Emerging Stronger | National Jewish Health | Annual Video Make an Appointment Make a Donation Contact Us Video Transcript National Jewish Health was founded more than 123 years ago to defeat a respiratory illness pandemic for which there was no cure. People were dying of tuberculosis.In Denver, community leaders came together and built the first National Jewish Hospital and we have continued our mission since that time.Today, National Jewish Health is exceedingly well-suited to fight this pandemic for which there also is no cure. Everyone at this institution gives a thousand percent and because of that, we have emerged even stronger.I started feeling not well and I had had this cough, as a matter of fact, people would find me in a crowd because they'd say, wait a minute, he'll cough and wouldn't find him. Then when he coughed up blood, that was pretty scary.So I went to a local pulmonologist here and he ran some tests. He indicated to me that I might want to consider going to National Jewish Health, the number one respiratory hospital in the country.Anytime you see your loved one in a hospital situation of any kind, you realize it's serious. Before COVID, I did CNA type work, which is certified nursing aid.I love helping people and caring for people.I was very physically fit.We were always outside, disconnecting from everything because you really can get down to earth and focus on your family. I got sick caring for people with COVID and it never got better.I was losing motor function. I was getting weak and I couldn't hold myself upright. I couldn't read my second grader's homework and help her with it, which was super scary. I was watching my family participate in life and I was just a spectator.My son's asthma, he was coughing and his lips were turning blue. I would stay up and lay with him because I didn't want to feel like he was going to stop breathing. I could lose my child.At Morgridge Academy at National Jewish Health, he started to improve. They're able to teach them how to manage their diagnosis and they're so encouraging. Asthma is affecting millions of people across the world.And so a common concept in our field is the atopic march, but refers to the progression of allergic conditions as they happen. So what starts first in early infancy is eczema that leads to food allergies.And then kids get recurrent wheezing, they're diagnosed with asthma. Every time you start a study, you want to know what is the question that you're trying to answer.For us, it's why do infants and young children develop eczema and food allergy and asthma? The very top layer of our skin provides a window towards the events happening inside our body.By studying this very top surface, we can get answers. When I first heard about the study at National Jewish Health, I knew that it would have a positive result.Historically, when you want to look at the skin barrier, you would actually have to do a skin biopsy. And that's fairly invasive.What we have here at National Jewish Health is this technology that we've actually pioneered. And we're one of the few centers in the whole world that do this type of research.And so we're able to, just on a sticker, look at proteins, lipids, and that will tell us how permeable or penetrable the skin is. We have developed a unique approach, I would say, that permits us to analyze all kinds of molecules. And at the end, we have quantitative data to compare future results and future studies.It's stories like Rashida and her son and her daughter that will help us put faces to what our research is doing. Our research potentially can stop the atopic march from happening and give us ways for prevention of conditions like asthma.It wasn't until I got to National Jewish Health and saw Lisa Meyer, and she was the first person to tell me that they could help me. If you looked at Brandy and saw her when she came into the clinic initially, she looked healthy.She had been told this was all in her head, and it wasn't. We're really fortunate here that we have had the opportunity to provide multidisciplinary care for our patients.Brandy was working full-time as two school-age kids, so there's no way to fit in having a severe illness that completely debilitates you.There were things that sort of stood out to me right away that said, oh, she probably has something called POTS, or postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome, and unfortunately has a lot of symptoms associated with it, including dizziness, fatigue, heart racing, maybe even chest pain.I was extremely validating to have an actual diagnosis and have actual treatment that's working.National Jewish Health is not afraid of the unknown. They're not afraid to look and seek it out. This new medication that he put me on was like a wonder drug. She started feeling better immediately.I've been given back my life. On my first visit, we realized that National Jewish Health was different. I was able to meet with Dr. Gwen Hewitt, who I think is absolutely amazing.JARUS came to National Jewish with actually a long history of recurrent sinus and lung infections. We found that JARUS had a significant pulmonary MAC infection, and MAC stands for a groupof germs called mycobacterium avium complex, and these are very difficult germs to kill. So we had to come at his infection from a variety of angles so we could do a better job at killing this germ.I can see the train coming down the track, and I understood that without effective treatment, that I would not be able to continue doing those things that I wanted to do.His cough has improved substantially, and we've got to take the whole person into account because this is what we do, and we're darn good at it.National Jewish Health has impacted my life in many ways.My wife Julie and I have started remodeling a very small condominium on Harbor Island. We've been going there for almost 40 years. Julie and I walked on that beach before we got married.I think it encourages Julie that I'm going to be able to enjoy it with her. The treatment at National Jewish Health has proven to me they're committed to doing what's best for you.They're committed to look beyond the present to other possibilities that are related to your illness and explore those possibilities.They have a plan, and they're going to execute that plan, and that gives you hope.At National Jewish Health, breathing science is life.