ANN ARBOR — A University of Michigan pediatrics professor’s work in cystic fibrosis (CF) is being honored with a fellowship program.
The Bonnell Foundation: Living with Cystic Fibrosis is raising money to support the Pediatric Pulmonology Fellowship Training Program at C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, to honor Dr. Samya Nasr and her many contributions to her field.
Nasr, professor of pediatrics and the director of the Cystic Fibrosis Clinical Center at the University of Michigan Health, has drastically improved the lives of children living with CF in the U.S. and globally. Doctors weren’t aware of the prevalence of CF in Nasr’s native country of Egypt, until Nasr brought the disease to light. For years, families had children undiagnosed, with parents losing multiple children and not knowing why.
In 2007, after a decade of travel to Egypt and discussions with doctors about the disease, Nasr acquired a sweat test machine, used to test for the disease. With that equipment, she was able to diagnose 12 patients with her Egyptian colleagues. Now, more than a 1,000 patients have been diagnosed, thanks to Nasr’s persistent efforts.
The fellowship is designed to train more doctors in the field, to meet a national concern that the pediatric pulmonology workforce will not be sufficient to meet the needs of children with respiratory diseases. This concern is particularly acute in the Michigan, which has 1.26 board certified pediatric pulmonologists per 100,000 children, below the national average of 1.5.
To meet this demand, the University of Michigan has been developing innovative new training models with the goals of increasing the number of trainees interested in pediatric pulmonology, improving the quality of clinical training of its trainees and developing leaders in research to identify cures for pediatric lung diseases. The fellowship will aid in the effort.
The Bonnell Foundation is looking for support for the fellowship, which can help expand the pool of well-trained pediatric pulmonologists. The funding will go towards supporting research and training in pediatric lung disease at the University of Michigan.
To contribute to the fellowship, please visit: thebonnellfoundation.org/donate/pediatric-pulmonology-fellowship-training-program
Nasr will also be honored with an award by The Bonnell Foundation at a fundraising gala for the fellowship in September.
The Bonnell Foundation offers college scholarships to those affected by CF, medical assistance and lung transplant grants and other resources and support.