Career Definition for a Respiratory Treatment Professional
Respiratory treatment professionals work with other medical professionals and specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of cardiopulmonary disorders. Depending on the job, responsibilities include monitoring life-saving equipment used by critically ill patients, educating the public about disease prevention, and keeping medical records in accordance with all applicable regulations. Experienced respiratory treatment professionals with advanced credentials might also seek opportunities in medical sales, supervision, and education.
|Education||Associate degree required, bachelor's degree also available|
|Job Skills||Team player, willing to learn new skills, patient instruction, desire for education|
|Median Salary (2017)*||$59,710 for respiratory therapists|
|Job Growth (2016-2026)*||23% for respiratory therapists|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
The minimum educational requirement for a career in respiratory treatment is a 2-year degree in respiratory therapy; however, many respiratory treatment professionals earn a 4-year degree. Coursework usually includes physics, mathematics, microbiology, and pharmacology. State licensing is typically required; however, requirements vary by state; professional certification is also available.
A respiratory treatment professional must be people-oriented, a good team player, and willing to learn new skills. In addition, they must be able to stay calm in emergency situations. Because an important part of the job of a respiratory treatment professional is to instruct patients and the general public about the prevention of respiratory diseases, a desire to educate others is essential.
Career and Economic Outlook
Jobs for respiratory treatment professionals can be found in a variety of medical settings, including large hospitals and small clinics. The U.S. Bureau of Statistics (BLS) reports that job opportunities for respiratory therapists are expected to grow by 23% between 2016 and 2026. The median annual income for a respiratory therapist was reported to be $59,710 in May 2017 by the BLS.
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Alternate Career Options
Explore these other options in the field of healthcare:
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