It’s fun getting to know our different team members, so what better way to welcome our newest recruit than by putting her through a quick Q&A session? Bianca joined our team just a couple of weeks ago as a Respiratory Health Educator. We were keen to get to know her better and thought others should too.
What were you doing before coming to Asthma WA?
Prior to joining Asthma WA, I worked as a physiotherapist in Hervey Bay, a small city in the Fraser Coast Region of Queensland. Being in a regional area my role consisted of a mixed caseload including musculoskeletal and paediatric physiotherapy as well as pulmonary rehabilitation and respiratory education.
What drew you to Asthma WA?
One of my earliest memories as a child was having a bad bout of pneumonia and having to visit the respiratory physiotherapist for chest percussion to help with clearing mucus from my lungs. I absolutely despised going to see her and at that point vowed that I would never become a physiotherapist or work in respiratory medicine. Thankfully, I have not been too heavily involved in pounding on someone’s chest in my physiotherapy career but instead have found a love for empowering people through education by helping them understand their respiratory condition and how to optimise their management to improve their day-to-day function and overall quality of life. This is what attracted me to becoming a Respiratory Health Educator at Asthma WA and I am looking forward to working with and empowering those who live with respiratory health issues in WA.
What do you love most about working in respiratory health?
I have experience in working with people with all sorts of respiratory conditions including asthma, COPD, bronchiectasis, pulmonary fibrosis, cystic fibrosis and lung cancer. Coming from a physiotherapy background, my experience is in running pulmonary rehabilitation exercise classes which also involved one on one education sessions or facilitating group discussions about various topics relating to respiratory health.
I have worked with people who feel hopeless about their respiratory condition, find themselves unable to participate in the daily activities they love with the people they love and are either in and out of hospital or constantly needing to make unscheduled appointments with their GPs. I have seen first-hand how empowering education and guidance in the self-management of their condition can be. Things as simple as checking on their inhaler technique, advise about how to manage shortness of breath, strategies to enhance airway clearance or simple ways to incorporate physical activity into the day-to-day routine make a significant difference in someone’s quality of life. I find fulfillment in being the health professional to share that knowledge and empower people to feel in control of their respiratory conditions.
How do you see your role at Asthma WA making a difference?
I am passionate about helping people do the activities they love with the people they love. I often feel in health care that patients aren’t properly heard or understood due to the fast-paced environment and time restraints of busy health professionals. When people don’t feel heard and are not understood it is nearly impossible to provide them with individualised advice and guidance that can be directly applied to their lives and is pitched at their level of understanding. I believe that is where a Respiratory Health Educator at Asthma WA fills the gap in providing opportunity and time to listen to people and their concerns and provide them with the relevant information at the right time to help them optimise the management of their respiratory conditions. I hope to make a difference by being an active listener to ensure that people feel their concerns have been heard and are provided with practical steps that are applicable to them for improving their respiratory health and overall quality of life.
What do you like to do outside of work?
I love to go camping, play board games and am a keen follower of Formula 1 racing (GO Max Verstappen!!!).
Do you have any favourite board games that you’d recommend to others?
My husband and I have delved very deeply into the world of modern board games. Whilst I don’t enjoy the large and lengthy strategic board games that my husband does, there are three party games that I would love to recommend that are fun, light-hearted and great for family or friend gatherings
A bit like poker with a twist – the biggest twist being it’s themed around a heist and the fallout of various crooks fighting for a greater share of the loot. Players have foam pistol guns (or an alternative object like a banana like the people in the below video have opted for) which they point at players as they try and bluff their way to getting the biggest stash.
Check out this video which looks like a lot of fun: https://youtu.be/vogIVlGiEn0
Sushi Go Party!
An expanded version of Sushi Go! fun board-game great for families where players try to make the “tastiest” meal and as much of it as possible! A card-drafting game where each player passes their cards to the person next to them and with each exchange they try and make the “tastiest” meal.
This video explains how it works: https://youtu.be/vr2Qc7LwpYg
The aim of the game is to get the lowest score, so with each turn of a card, you can take it or say “no thanks!” and place down a counter. But be careful, you only have so many counters in your hand. Once you run out, you have no choice but to take the next card presented to you!
Check out this video that explains how it works: https://youtu.be/Lw2ua5B0TTM
These all sound like great games! What a great way to pass the time with family and friends while sharing some laughs. Thanks for sharing Bianca, and welcome to the team!