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Respiratory Therapists

Assess, treat, and care for patients with breathing disorders. Assume primary responsibility for all respiratory care modalities, including the supervision of respiratory therapy technicians. Initiate and conduct therapeutic procedures; maintain patient records; and select, assemble, check, and operate equipment.

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    Work Activities

    Work Activities

    • Perform pulmonary function and adjust equipment to obtain optimum results in therapy.
    • Explain treatment procedures to patients to gain cooperation and allay fears.
    • Inspect, clean, test, and maintain respiratory therapy equipment to ensure equipment is functioning safely and efficiently, ordering repairs when necessary.
    • Make emergency visits to resolve equipment problems.
    • Perform pulmonary function and adjust equipment to obtain optimum results in therapy.
    • Provide emergency care, such as artificial respiration, external cardiac massage, or assistance with cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
    • Work as part of a team of physicians, nurses, or other healthcare professionals to manage patient care by assisting with medical procedures or related duties.
    • Read prescription, measure arterial blood gases, and review patient information to assess patient condition.
    • Inspect, clean, test, and maintain respiratory therapy equipment to ensure equipment is functioning safely and efficiently, ordering repairs when necessary.
    • Use a variety of testing techniques to assist doctors in cardiac or pulmonary research or to diagnose disorders.
    • Transport patients to the hospital or within the hospital.
    • Teach, train, supervise, or use the assistance of students, respiratory therapy technicians, or assistants.
    • Monitor cardiac patients, using electrocardiography devices, such as a holter monitor.
    • Conduct tests, such as electrocardiograms (EKGs), stress testing, or lung capacity tests, to evaluate patients' cardiopulmonary functions.
    • Inspect, clean, test, and maintain respiratory therapy equipment to ensure equipment is functioning safely and efficiently, ordering repairs when necessary.
    • Educate patients and their families about their conditions and teach appropriate disease management techniques, such as breathing exercises or the use of medications or respiratory equipment.
    • Determine requirements for treatment, such as type, method and duration of therapy, precautions to be taken, or medication and dosages, compatible with physicians' orders.
    • Monitor patient's physiological responses to therapy, such as vital signs, arterial blood gases, or blood chemistry changes, and consult with physician if adverse reactions occur.
    • Set up and operate devices, such as mechanical ventilators, therapeutic gas administration apparatus, environmental control systems, or aerosol generators, following specified parameters of treatment.
    • Maintain charts that contain patients' pertinent identification and therapy information.
    • Provide emergency care, such as artificial respiration, external cardiac massage, or assistance with cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
    • Monitor patient's physiological responses to therapy, such as vital signs, arterial blood gases, or blood chemistry changes, and consult with physician if adverse reactions occur.
    • Set up and operate devices, such as mechanical ventilators, therapeutic gas administration apparatus, environmental control systems, or aerosol generators, following specified parameters of treatment.
    • Work as part of a team of physicians, nurses, or other healthcare professionals to manage patient care by assisting with medical procedures or related duties.
    • Relay blood analysis results to a physician.
    • Perform bronchopulmonary drainage and assist or instruct patients in performance of breathing exercises.
    • Perform bronchopulmonary drainage and assist or instruct patients in performance of breathing exercises.
    • Use a variety of testing techniques to assist doctors in cardiac or pulmonary research or to diagnose disorders.
    • Teach, train, supervise, or use the assistance of students, respiratory therapy technicians, or assistants.
    • Perform endotracheal intubation to maintain open airways for patients who are unable to breathe on their own.
    • Enforce safety rules and ensure careful adherence to physicians' orders.
    • Demonstrate respiratory care procedures to trainees or other healthcare personnel.

    Skills

    • Time Management

      Managing your time and the time of other people.

    • Critical Thinking

      Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.

    • Equipment Selection

      Deciding what kind of tools and equipment are needed to do a job.

    • Equipment Maintenance

      Planning and doing the basic maintenance on equipment.

    • Reading Comprehension

      Reading work-related information.

    • Operation and Control

      Using equipment or systems.

    • Active Learning

      Figuring out how to use new ideas or things.

    • Systems Evaluation

      Measuring how well a system is working and how to improve it.

    • Learning Strategies

      Using the best training or teaching strategies for learning new things.

    • Instructing

      Teaching people how to do something.

    • Installation

      Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or computer programs.

    • Management of Material Resources

      Managing equipment and materials.

    • Persuasion

      Talking people into changing their minds or their behavior.

    • Negotiation

      Bringing people together to solve differences.

    • Complex Problem Solving

      Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.

    • Technology Design

      Making equipment and technology useful for customers.

    • Programming

      Writing computer programs.

    • Repairing

      Repairing machines or systems using the right tools.

    • Management of Financial Resources

      Making spending decisions and keeping track of what is spent.

    • Mathematics

      Using math to solve problems.

    • Speaking

      Talking to others.

    • Judgment and Decision Making

      Thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one.

    • Management of Personnel Resources

      Selecting and managing the best workers for a job.

    • Science

      Using scientific rules and strategies to solve problems.

    • Monitoring

      Keeping track of how well people and/or groups are doing in order to make improvements.

    • Social Perceptiveness

      Understanding people's reactions.

    • Coordination

      Changing what is done based on other people's actions.

    • Service Orientation

      Looking for ways to help people.

    • Operations Analysis

      Figuring out what a product or service needs to be able to do.

    • Operations Monitoring

      Watching gauges, dials, or display screens to make sure a machine is working.

    • Troubleshooting

      Figuring out what is causing equipment, machines, wiring, or computer programs to not work.

    • Quality Control Analysis

      Testing how well a product or service works.

    • Systems Analysis

      Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in the future will affect it.

    • Active Listening

      Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.

    • Writing

      Writing things for co-workers or customers.

    WorkKeys®

    Applied Math
    4
    Workplace Documents
    5
    Graphic Literacy
    5

    Abilities

    • Selective Attention

      Paying attention to something without being distracted.

    • Number Facility

      Adding, subtracting, multiplying, or dividing.

    • Multilimb Coordination

      Using your arms and/or legs together while sitting, standing, or lying down.

    • Finger Dexterity

      Putting together small parts with your fingers.

    • Perceptual Speed

      Quickly comparing groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.

    • Mathematical Reasoning

      Choosing the right type of math to solve a problem.

    • Gross Body Coordination

      Moving your arms, legs, and mid-section together while your whole body is moving.

    • Trunk Strength

      Using your lower back and stomach.

    • Explosive Strength

      Jumping, sprinting, or throwing something.

    • Hearing Sensitivity

      Telling the difference between sounds.

    • Speech Recognition

      Recognizing spoken words.

    • Oral Comprehension

      Listening and understanding what people say.

    • Written Comprehension

      Reading and understanding what is written.

    • Deductive Reasoning

      Using rules to solve problems.

    • Gross Body Equilibrium

      Keeping your balance or staying upright.

    • Peripheral Vision

      Seeing something to your side when your are looking ahead.

    • Wrist-Finger Speed

      Making fast, simple, repeated movements of your fingers, hands, and wrists.

    • Stamina

      Exercising for a long time without getting out of breath.

    • Memorization

      Remembering words, numbers, pictures, or steps.

    • Flexibility of Closure

      Seeing hidden patterns.

    • Manual Dexterity

      Holding or moving items with your hands.

    • Information Ordering

      Ordering or arranging things.

    • Extent Flexibility

      Bending, stretching, twisting, or reaching with your body, arms, and/or legs.

    • Problem Sensitivity

      Noticing when problems happen.

    • Oral Expression

      Communicating by speaking.

    • Written Expression

      Communicating by writing.

    • Fluency of Ideas

      Coming up with lots of ideas.

    • Originality

      Creating new and original ideas.

    • Visualization

      Imagining how something will look after it is moved around or changed.

    • Rate Control

      Changing when and how fast you move based on how something else is moving.

    • Spatial Orientation

      Knowing where things are around you.

    • Time Sharing

      Doing two or more things at the same time.

    • Arm-Hand Steadiness

      Keeping your arm or hand steady.

    • Dynamic Strength

      Exercising for a long time without your muscles getting tired.

    • Night Vision

      Seeing at night or under low light.

    • Glare Sensitivity

      Seeing something even if there is a glare or very bright light.

    • Reaction Time

      Quickly moving your hand, finger, or foot based on a sound, light, picture or other command.

    • Dynamic Flexibility

      Quickly and repeatedly bending, stretching, twisting, or reaching out with your body, arms, and/or legs.

    • Visual Color Discrimination

      Noticing the difference between colors, including shades and brightness.

    • Speech Clarity

      Speaking clearly.

    • Near Vision

      Seeing details up close.

    • Depth Perception

      Deciding which thing is closer or farther away from you, or deciding how far away it is from you.

    • Sound Localization

      Noticing the direction that a sound came from.

    • Category Flexibility

      Grouping things in different ways.

    • Far Vision

      Seeing details that are far away.

    • Speed of Limb Movement

      Quickly moving your arms and legs.

    • Static Strength

      Lifting, pushing, pulling, or carrying.

    • Auditory Attention

      Paying attention to one sound while there are other distracting sounds.

    • Inductive Reasoning

      Making general rules or coming up with answers from lots of detailed information.

    • Speed of Closure

      Quickly knowing what you are looking at.

    • Response Orientation

      Quickly deciding if you should move your hand, foot, or other body part.

    • Control Precision

      Quickly changing the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat.

    Knowledge

    • Physics

      Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub-atomic structures and processes.

    • Fine Arts

      Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

    • Administrative

      Knowledge of administrative and office procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and workplace terminology.

    • Personnel and Human Resources

      Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.

    • Computers and Electronics

      Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

    • Psychology

      Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.

    • Medicine and Dentistry

      Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.

    • Telecommunications

      Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.

    • Design

      Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

    • History and Archeology

      Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.

    • Communications and Media

      Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media.

    • Transportation

      Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.

    • Law and Government

      Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.

    • Sales and Marketing

      Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.

    • Production and Processing

      Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

    • Sociology and Anthropology

      Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures, and their history and origins.

    • Foreign Language

      Knowledge of the structure and content of a foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.

    • Philosophy and Theology

      Knowledge of different philosophical systems and religions. This includes their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and their impact on human culture.

    • Engineering and Technology

      Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.

    • Public Safety and Security

      Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

    • Chemistry

      Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.

    • Therapy and Counseling

      Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.

    • Education and Training

      Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

    • Biology

      Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.

    • Geography

      Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.

    • English Language

      Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

    • Building and Construction

      Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.

    • Mathematics

      Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

    • Administration and Management

      Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

    • Food Production

      Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.

    • Mechanical

      Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

    • Economics and Accounting

      Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking, and the analysis and reporting of financial data.

    • Customer and Personal Service

      Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

    Career Video

    Additional videos and more information available on CareerOneStop

    Pay

    • Ohio Annual Salary 77180/yr
    • Typical Salary
    • Ohio Hourly Wage 37.11/hr
    • Typical Hourly Wage

    Ohio Employment Trends

    • Currently Employed 7,890
    • Yearly Projected Openings 480

    Typical Education

    Personality

    Social: People interested in this work like activities that include helping people, teaching, and talking.They do well at jobs that need:
    • Cooperation
    • Concern for Others
    • Attention to Detail
    • Dependability
    • Integrity
    • Self Control

    Tools

    • Apnea monitors
    • Arterial blood gas monitors
    • Autotransfusion units
    • Bedside pulmonary function screeners
    • Blood collection syringes
    • Bronchoscopes
    • Cardiac output CO monitoring units
    • Chest cuirass products
    • Chest percussors
    • Clinical incubators or infant warmers
    • Electrocardiography EKG units
    • Electronic blood pressure units
    • Endotracheal tubes
    • Flow sensors or regulators or components
    • High frequency ventilators
    • Intensive care ventilators
    • Intermittent positive pressure breathing IPPB machines
    • Intraaortic balloon pumps
    • Medical acoustic stethoscopes
    • Medical aerosol tents
    • Medical gas cylinders or related devices
    • Medical head hoods
    • Medical nasal cannulas
    • Medical or surgical suction or vacuum appliances
    • Medical oxygen masks or parts
    • Mercury blood pressure units
    • Nebulizers
    • Non invasive bi level machines
    • Non invasive continuous positive air pressure machines
    • Notebook computers
    • Oxygen concentrators
    • Oxygen delivery connectors or adapters
    • Perfusion oxygen or hematocrit saturation monitors
    • Personal computers
    • Personal digital assistant PDAs or organizers
    • Pulmonary functioning tubing
    • Pulse oximeter units
    • Respiratory humidifiers or vaporizers
    • Respiratory manometer kits
    • Respiratory monitoring kit accessories
    • Respiratory monitoring kits
    • Respiratory therapy compressors
    • Resuscitation masks
    • Spirometers
    • Sputum collection apparatus or containers
    • Surgical isolation suit or helmet or shield
    • Tablet computers
    • Tourniquets
    • Tracheostomy tubes
    • Treadmill exercisers for rehabilitation or therapy
    • Vacuum blood collection tubes or containers

    Technology

    • Calendar and scheduling software
    • Data base user interface and query software
    • Electronic mail software
    • Medical software
    • Office suite software
    • Presentation software
    • Spreadsheet software
    • Word processing software

    Tags

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