Respiratory Therapist Training
Completing training as a respiratory therapist will require credits in math, physics, anatomy, chemistry, microbiology, and pharmacology. Training includes classes that will teach the use and care of respiratory machinery, education in working with pressurized gasses, HAZMAT care, CPR, record maintenance, and clinical guidelines. Most respiratory therapists usually obtain an associates degree and find gainful employment within the hospital setting. Most employees require candidates to complete state certification prior to hire.
Certified respiratory therapists will be afforded the title CRTT. Respiratory therapists who complete training but do not take a certification exam can still register with particular states and earn the title Registered Respiratory Therapist, or RTT.
Education for both titles is usually obtained via two or four year colleges and universities. Some major universities offer exceptional CRTT training and testing. RTT programs are typically offered through community and junior colleges. However, obtaining an RTT licensing will allow you the credential required to take the exam for certification.
Respiratory Therapist Duties
Respiratory therapy is the treatment and management of cardiopulmonary ailments. The individuals who facilitate this management are known as respiratory therapists. Respiratory therapists work directly under the supervision of a doctor and follow directives given thereby. The duties of a respiratory therapist consist of a wide range of treatments for people who have asthma, edema, emphysema, and other respiratory ailments. Respiratory therapists are a vital part of any medical team and their involvement is necessary for patients who need care for asphyxiation, stroke, heart failure, shock, and even drowning. Often people who suffer head injuries or suffer a drug overdose require the services of a respiratory therapist as well. Another exciting duty of the respiratory therapist is the care and monitoring of the respiration of newborn babies who must enter a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).
Respiratory therapists are educated to use a variety of technologies including various breathing machines, percussors, and aerosol inhalers. The various detailed responsibilities of a respiratory therapist include the completion of blood-gas analysis, stimulation of mucus flow from the lungs, and the sterilization, operation and maintenance of incubators, respirators, and other respiratory masks. Respiratory therapists are also responsible for patient education and the construction of at home breathing exercise programs for patients who require ongoing care.
The working conditions for a respiratory therapist are often fast paced and because these therapists work hand in hand with other medical staff, an ability to operate successfully in a team is of vital importance for graduates in this field. Respiratory therapists must maintain impeccable bed side techniques and must carry sympathy for patients while maintaining open lines of communication between themselves and patients, as well as themselves and other medical staff.
Respiratory therapy is a key part of the medical industry and jobs in this field continue to rise annually. If you are considering an education in respiratory therapy, you will be able to find many accredited programs through online research. You may also consider consulting hospital staff in your area and request a sit down with a working respiratory therapist. He or she will be able to answer real-life questions about the job and the training.
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