Quickfacts:

Median Annual Salary:

$58,420

Data last updated October 2021

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Job Description

A respiratory therapist is a certified medical professional who specializes in pulmonary medicine in order to work therapeutically with people suffering from pulmonary disease. RT’s consult with patients to develop a treatment plan and perform various diagnostic tests. RT’s work with a variety of different breathing issues such as chronic respiratory disease, asthma, or emphysema.

RT’s have been critical during the COVID-19 pandemic as they are working on the front lines treating patients who have been put on ventilators and are suffering from low lung function. RT’s are there every step of the way once a patient is deemed to have issues with their lungs. They administer treatment and are allowed autonomy to alter treatments if necessary, until the patient recovers.

 

Patient Contact

High

Employment Outlook

From 2018 to 2028, Respiratory Therapists can expect to see a growth in demand of 21% for their skills. This is much higher than the national average for most other professions.

Education

Associate Degree – 3 - 5 Years