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Respiratory Therapy Schools

Not being able to breathe is a frightening thing. If you graduate from one of the nation's respiratory therapy schools, you may be the person who can give that breath of fresh air to the people who need it most.

Respiratory Therapy Schools: Breathing Easy in the Right Career

Helping someone breathe can literally give them life--and it is something that you may able to do if you go to a respiratory therapy school.

Career Options for Respiratory Technicians and Therapists

Health care jobs are growing and attending a respiratory therapy school can put you right in the thick of things. Recognized respiratory therapy schools train respiratory therapists to:
  • Work with doctors and other health care workers to set up patient care plans
  • Evaluate patients
  • Treat patients
  • Care for patients with breathing or heart/lung disorders
  • Work with equipment used in specialized units, such as intensive care units and emergency rooms
  • Perform diagnostic tests according to doctors' orders
If you are a respiratory technician, you may do many of these tasks under a respiratory therapist's supervision.

Respiratory therapy schools may be found in:
  • Colleges
  • Universities
  • Medical schools
  • Vocational-technical institutes
Education and Licensing after Respiratory Therapy School

In some places, the terms respiratory therapist and respiratory technician are used in place of each other. When investigating respiratory therapy schools in your area, be sure to check if there is a difference in your system.

Both respiratory technicians and respiratory therapists usually need associate's degrees--it's the minimum for the therapists and many are encouraged to go on to obtain a bachelor's or even master's degree. Respiratory technicians may participate in an apprenticeship program, depending on the location. Sometimes, an employer may hire a technician with a post-high school certificate rather than a degree.

Both therapists and technologists may also be required to have updated cardiopulmonary resuscitation certification.

Licensing is required for respiratory therapists, not technologists, in all states except Hawaii and Alaska. Each state has its own requirements, so be sure to check what your particular state requires.

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