A certified respiratory therapist (RT) treats patients with cardiopulmonary and secondary conditions such as asthma, emphysema, pneumonia, heart diseases and strain. The respiratory specialists endeavors to facilitate the recovery of patients in energy care, ICUs, pulmonary testing labs or under special life support systems to ensure a seamless recovery.
Daily Duties & Responsibilities
An RT works to diagnose lung and respiratory conditions and then develop a suitable treatment regimen for the patient. The practitioners first discusses symptoms with the patient, followed by a lung examination and examination of tissue specimens. It is also part of the RT’s responsibility to make suitable respiratory add-ons such as ventilator use and the implementation of artificial airways for patients experiencing breathing difficulties. These professionals play a significant role in attending Code Blue or any urgent care need required in an emergency.
There have been significant and valuable changes in the job roles of an RT. They not only have to diagnose difficult symptoms correctly, bur also manage respiratory technicians and devices. For instance, an RT may have to examine a person’s breathing potential and identify the concentration of oxygen and other gases in their blood. They may be required to train patients and their relatives to apply ventilators and other life supporting devices at home. An efficient RT has to coordinate with other physicians and medical staff to change medications if needed as well. In some cases, respiratory therapists may go beyond their responsibilities and even administer pulmonary rehabilitation.
An RT, after completing their academic training, needs to acquire a license to practice as a professional. The person should have completed an undergraduate or graduate degree from a reputable institution. There are some community colleges which offer education programs in respiratory therapy. Candidates with advanced education and training have greater possibility of landing positions with higher compensation potential. Practitioners with graduate level education may assume more senior management positions as well as instructor roles in educating new practitioners.
Obtaining a Certified Respiratory Therapist (CRT) certificate is essential for practitioners looking to acquire state licenses and subsequent work as a respiratory therapist. This certificate can be acquired only after completing the National Board for Respiratory Care certification program. There is another exam candidates must pass to become a Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT). Other related certifications available for candidates to purse include a neonatal/pediatric specialty as well as a registered pulmonary function technician.