Awards | Pulmonology & Respiratory

WASHINGTON, NC – Compassionate, a strong patient advocate, calm and comforting are just a few ways respiratory care practitioner Karen Holland is described by patients and their families as well as the doctors she works alongside. Karen was recently awarded the Pulmonary Health and Illness of the Lung (PHIL) Award for excellence in respiratory care; nominated by two physicians who care for patients at ECU Health Beaufort Hospital.

Karen often works with the most critical patients and over the past two years many of those patients had COVID-19. The physicians who nominated her commented on the many incidents of witnessing Karen sitting at a patient’s beside as their condition was deteriorating, educating and explaining to patients what was happening. Karen’s demeanor is calm and comforting and patients often call on Karen to talk with their families, even after the physicians had talked with them to help explain and calm fears. She is a strong advocate for her patients and provides special attention to make sure patients and their families stay in communication throughout their hospital stay.

Karen was presented with the PHIL award by Alene Payne, manager of respiratory care at ECU Health Beaufort Hospital. The PHIL Award was established by the FACES Foundation to recognize outstanding respiratory practitioners who provide care and treatment for patients with respiratory illness. ECU Health recognizes two PHIL Award winners each year – one from ECU Health Medical Center and one representing the ECU Health regional hospitals. Karen was named as the regional recipient. This is the fifth consecutive year the regional award has been received by an ECU Health Beaufort Hospital team member.

Karen Holland, a PHIL Award winner, poses for a photo.

Karen is a graduate of the Pitt Community College respiratory therapy program and began her career as a respiratory care practitioner in 1995 at ECU Health Medical Center (then Pitt County Memorial Hospital) and joined the Beaufort team in 2012. She is an amazing respiratory care practitioner and also a strong proponent of every discipline involved in caring for a respiratory patient. She recognizes the benefits of the entire care team and is a positive support for all of her colleagues.

Payne presented the award to Holland surrounded by her colleagues and hospital leadership. One of the physicians commented, “Karen is not only an excellent therapist, but you know she care about her patients; this is more than just a job for her and it shows in all that she does.”