Assess, treat, and care for patients with breathing disorders. Assume primary responsibility for all respiratory care modalities, including the supervision of respiratory therapy technicians. Initiate and conduct therapeutic procedures; maintain patient records; and select, assemble, check, and operate equipment.
- Certified Respiratory Therapist (CRT)
- Certified Respiratory Therapist Technician
- Clinical Coordinator of Respiratory Therapy
- Director of Cardiopulmonary Services
- Inhalation Therapist
- Oxygen Therapist
- Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT)
- Respiratory Care Practitioner (RCP)
- Respiratory Therapist (RT)
- Respiratory Therapy Director
- Provide emergency care, such as artificial respiration, external cardiac massage, or assistance with cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
- Read prescription, measure arterial blood gases, and review patient information to assess patient condition.
- Monitor patient's physiological responses to therapy, such as vital signs, arterial blood gases, or blood chemistry changes, and consult with physician if adverse reactions occur.
- Set up and operate devices such as mechanical ventilators, therapeutic gas administration apparatus, environmental control systems, or aerosol generators, following specified parameters of treatment.
- Enforce safety rules and ensure careful adherence to physicians' orders.
- Explain treatment procedures to patients to gain cooperation and allay fears.
- Relay blood analysis results to a physician.
- Maintain charts that contain patients' pertinent identification and therapy information.
- Work as part of a team of physicians, nurses, or other healthcare professionals to manage patient care by assisting with medical procedures or related duties.
- Inspect, clean, test, and maintain respiratory therapy equipment to ensure equipment is functioning safely and efficiently, ordering repairs when necessary.
People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: SIR.
This means people who work in this occupation generally have Social interests, but also prefer Investigative and Realistic environments.
People who work in this occupation generally prize Relationships, but also value Support and Recognition in their jobs.
- Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- Medicine and Dentistry - Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
- Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
- English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Biology - Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
- Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
- Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
- Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.
In 2012, the average annual wage in California was $73,320.00 with most people making between $53,630.00 and $95,150.00
During 2010, this occupation employed approximately 14,200 people in California. It is projected that there will be 17,900 employed in 2020.
This occupation will have about 360 openings due to growth and about 270 replacement openings for approximately 630 total annual openings.
majorMedical Radiologic Technology/Science - Radiation Therapist
collegeCosumnes River College
majorRespiratory Care Therapy/Therapist
collegeUniversity of Southern California
collegeLoma Linda University
majorNursing/Registered Nurse (RN, ASN, BSN, MSN)