Emiel Wouters - Biography#

After gymnasium, the applicant started his training in medicine at the University of Leuven, Belgium in 1971. In 1978, he graduated as doctor in medicine with magna cum laude at the same University. After graduation, he immediately started his residency in internal medicine at the University Hospital Leuven. After 3 years residency in internal medicine, he decided to start his residency in respiratory medicine at the University Hospital in Maastricht. He finished his residency in 1984. He was appointed as chest physician and assistant professor in respiratory medicine at the University Hospital Maastricht. In November 1987, he successfully defended his PhD thesis “Bronchial response in COPD measured by forced oscillations”. In 1987, he was appointed as associate professor at Maastricht University. One of his focus domains in that period was to start up a translational research programme in respiratory medicine. COPD attracted his interest and he was one of the pioneers to focus attention on multi-component pathology beyond the lungs in these patients. Furthermore, he realized the importance of clinical research in the field of pulmonary rehabilitation. From his appointment as full professor in 1992 until his retirement in 2019, the applicant remained fully engaged in building up his research programme. As chairman of the department of respiratory medicine at the University Hospital Maastricht, the youngest university hospital in the Netherlands, he was heavily engaged to build up a state-of-the-art, high level department, covering the whole spectrum of respiratory medicine, including pulmonary oncology as well as home mechanical ventilation. In the meantime, he was actively involved in national and international societies, contributed to scientific meetings and postgraduate courses as invited speaker and got involved in many international collaborations. He became chairman of Advisory Council on Research of the Dutch Asthma Foundation from 1999 still 2006. Locally, he was member and chair of the advisory research board of Maastricht University and the University Hospital Maastricht. Based on his organisational and management skills, he was appointed by the board of directors of the University Hospital as chairman of the Thorax centre and later on as director of the centre of chronic diseases in the same hospital. Combined with his duties within the University Hospital Maastricht, from 2005 until 2019, he was chairman of the Board of Directors at CIRO, a centre for integrated rehabilitation of organ failure as well as an academic centre for sleep medicine. Under his chairmanship, the respiratory department of the Maastricht University Medical Centre as well as CIRO acquired a leading position in respiratory medicine in the Netherlands and were internationally recognised as centres of expertise and excellence. After his retirement as full professor he remained active in the field of health care organisation as chairman of the supervisory board of a general hospital as well as chairman of the supervisory board of the strategic network organisation of regional hospitals in Flanders, Belgium. The applicant is married and father of 3 daughters.

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