Pursuing a Career as a Respiratory Therapist: What You Should Know

There are many different jobs that you can get in the healthcare industry, and becoming a respiratory therapist is one occupation that you will want to explore. These professionals treat patients who have problems with their heart and lungs. This can be a very rewarding job and there are a lot of benefits associated with it. The more you learn about respiratory therapy, the more likely you are to seriously consider pursuing it as a career.


One of the important things to look for when you are weighing your different job options is the salary that you will get paid. A vast majority of people who work as a respiratory therapist make around $58,500 per year, though you could make up to $70,000. When it comes to being a respiratory therapist, your salary will largely depend on the amount of education and experience you have.

Work Environment

You will also need to know what kind of work environment you will be in as a respiratory therapist. Most respiratory therapists work full-time with a number of patients throughout each week. You can expect to work with disabled patients who have problems relating to the lungs and heart. You will also be on your feet most of the day, and it is sometimes necessary to physically lift patients into or out of their beds. There are a number of places that you can work as a respiratory therapist, though most of these professionals work in hospitals.

Education and Training

If you are interested in becoming a respiratory therapist, you will first need to fulfill the basic education and training requirements. You will need to get at least an associate’s degree, though a bachelor’s degree will help you maximize your earning potential in this field. It is crucial that you take the time to look for the best respiratory therapy programs so you can find one that will provide you with the training and education you need.

Job Outlook

The job outlook for respiratory therapists is very good, so you shouldn’t have any problems with getting employed once you have completed the necessary education and training requirements. This particular area of the healthcare industry is expected to grow by 25% in the next eight years, which is extremely encouraging.


As a respiratory therapist, you will be responsible for examining patients using specialized equipment that is designed to test their breathing. You will also be required to consult with physicians when the situation arises. These professionals must determine each patient’s lung capacity, making notes of any issues as they go along. There is a lot of responsibility, but it is extremely rewarding work for those who are passionate about it.

Respiratory therapy is a very popular part of the healthcare industry for college students, and it’s certainly one option that you will want to keep in mind as you try to decide what you want to do. This job can be extremely demanding on many levels, but it has much to offer.

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