What is Respiratory Care?

1. Respiratory Care is the health profession that specializes in the promotion of optimum cardiopulmonary function and health.

2. Respiratory Therapists apply scientific principles to prevent, identify, and treat acute or chronic dysfunction of the cardiopulmonary system.

3. Respiratory Therapists have an in-depth knowledge of:

  • Cardiopulmonary physiology and pathophysiology.
  • Patient assessment and cardiopulmonary diagnostics
  • Pulmonary disease
  • Advanced life support and critical care
  • Pharmacology
  • Biomedical engineering and technology

4. Respiratory Therapists effectively

  • Assess
  • Educate
  • Develop respiratory care plans
  • Treat patients with heart and lung problems
What Do Respiratory Therapists Do?

1. Respiratory Therapists apply:

  • Critical thinking
  • Patient/environment assessment skills
  • Evidence based clinical practice skills

2. Respiratory Therapists:

  • Develop and implement effective care plans
  • Apply patient driven protocols
  • Utilize disease-based clinical pathways
  • Implement disease management programs
  • Perform therapeutic and diagnostic procedures

In summary:  Respiratory Therapists work to evaluate, treat, and care for patients with lung and heart disorders.

Job outlook and Salary
  • Median annual salaries for respiratory therapists in 2008 was $52,200 per year according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • The demand for Respiratory Therapists is expected to increase by 21% by the year 2018 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
“UACCH’s Respiratory Therapy program not only made a dramatic difference in my life and my earning potential, but it has allowed me to be a key player in saving lives.  The respiratory care instruction provided here is second to none. With a completely clear conscience, I know a person could not do better than to place them self under instruction of the UACCH Respiratory Care Program. What you attain and how far you go professionally will only be limited by your desire.”

Mark Deaton
Lead Therapist, Select Specialty Hospital
Fort Smith, Arkansas