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Moira Aitken
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May 21, 2024

Moira Aitken receives Outstanding Clinician Award

This award recognizes and individual who has made substantial contributions in the clinical care of patients with lung disease.
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Awards Clinical Faculty

Dr. Moira Aitken, professor (Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine) has received the 2024 American Thoracic Society Outstanding Clinician Award.

This award recognizes and individual who has made substantial contributions in the clinical care of patients with lung diseases on a local or national level.

Awardees are recognized by patients and families as caring and dedicated healthcare providers, and by their peers as having made substantial contributions to the clinical care of patients with respiratory disease.


Dr. Moira L. Aitken was born near the fishing village of Buckie, on the East coast of Scotland. She received her medical degree from Edinburgh University and her initial post-graduate training at the Royal Infirmary and Western General Hospital in Edinburgh.

She came to the University of Washington in 1982 for fellowship training in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine. She developed a research focus in airway physiology and joined the UW faculty as the second female member of what was then known as the Division of Respiratory Diseases.

Dr. Aitken co-founded the Adult Cystic Fibrosis Program at the UW in 1989 and served as Program Director for more than 30 years. She dedicated her career to improving the lives of people with cystic fibrosis (CF) through direct patient care, research, teaching, advocacy, and mentorship.

When Dr. Aitken began this work, most patients with CF did not survive beyond early adulthood. Her caring nature and kind presence were comforting to patients and their families in these times and her empathetic manner was admired by trainees and colleagues.

Dr. Aitken fostered a multi-disciplinary approach to patient care and nurtured a productive environment for research and education. As a clinical investigator, she played an important role in the testing and implementation of new therapies for CF.

Over the course of her career, Dr. Aitken has had the great satisfaction of witnessing the profound impact of medical advances on the lives of her patients. Along the way, she inspired and mentored a generation of physicians and researchers who carry on her legacy.