Respiratory therapists work with patients of all ages to evaluate, monitor, and treat breathing disorders and cardiovascular problems, such as asthma and emphysema. This may include administering oxygen, measuring lung function, performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation in emergencies, or managing mechanical ventilators.
As a respiratory therapist, you'll work under the direction of a physician in this growing field. You'll find employment in a variety of settings, including:
- Acute/critical care hospitals
- Extended care facilities
- Outpatient clinics
- Private physicians' offices
- Home care companies
- Sleep studies
- Pulmonary function testing
- Equipment sales
The 2-year Respiratory Therapy program leads to an Associate in Applied Sciences degree, Respiratory Therapy. Program graduates are eligible to take the Therapist Multiple Choice (TMC) examination administered by the National Board for Respiratory Care to earn certification as a Certified Respiratory Therapist (CRT). Students may then become eligible to take the Clinical Simulation to earn their Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT) credential.
Is Respiratory Therapy a good fit for you? This career requires specific physical, mental and social capabilities. There are also specific requirements for background checks and immunizations. Find out more about what it takes to succeed as a respiratory therapist.
Learn More about Respiratory Therapy
In order to better assist students in understanding Respiratory Therapy, and to understand the important steps in applying to the Respiratory Therapy program, we expect prospective students to review the information below.
Launch Your Health Career at TCC
There are a variety of ways to work in the health care industry. TCC is fortunate to offer a number of educational programs in Health Sciences that might be of interest. In order to assist prospective students in fully understanding their training options, we encourage attendance at a free Health Careers Program Overview Information Session.
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Tacoma Community College's Respiratory Therapy program (#200306) Associate of Applied Science degree is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care www.coarc.com. Tacoma Community College's Respiratory program will prepare graduates with demonstrated competence in the cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills), and affective (behavior) learning domains of respiratory care practice as performed by the registered respiratory therapists (RRTs).
- Virtual Information Session
- American Association for Respiratory Care (AARC)
- Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (COARC)
- National Board of Respiratory Care (NBRC)
- National Health Career Association (NHA)
- US Department of Labor: Respiratory Therapists
- Respiratory Research
- Medical Encyclopedia: Respiratory Section
- Revised Code of Washington (RCW) for WA Respiratory Care Practitioners
- RCW for WA State Health Care Professionals