Respiratory Therapist

Health Careers

About the Career

Respiratory therapists treat all types of patients, ranging from premature infants whose lungs are not fully developed, to elderly people whose lungs are diseased. As an essential member of a health care team, they provide care to patients with chronic asthma or emphysema, as well as emergency care to patients who are victims of a heart attack, stroke, drowning or shock. They are trained to be members of the highly technical life support teams, patient educators, and rehabilitation specialists. The need for respiratory care will increase as the population ages. As treatment advances for heart attack and accident victims, premature babies and AIDS patients, the demand for respiratory care will grow. The respiratory care profession has a bright future with a great deal of job security and opportunity for advancement. Although hospitals will continue to employ the vast majority of therapists, a growing number of therapists can expect to work outside of hospitals in firms that provide respiratory care on a contract basis, offices of physicians, nursing homes or home health, colleges, or manufacturers of health equipment and supplies. Once students enter the profession, they may want to specialize in an area such as neonatal care, cardiopulmonary diagnostics, helicopter transport, critical care, education, or management.

Academic Programs

Respiratory Care

Respiratory Care is a health specialty relating to the diagnosis, treatment, preventive and rehabilitative care of individuals suffering from deficiencies, diseases and abnormalities affecting the process of breathing.

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Pre-Respiratory Care Certificate

This certificate is Phase I of a two-phase Respiratory Care program. The certificate includes all the general education and related courses (English, math, anatomy and physiology, integrated science, etc.)

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Projected Job Growth


* Source: EMSI Career Coach

Average Annual Salary


* Source: EMSI Career Coach

Similar Careers


Academic students are taking courses for credit toward a degree, certificate, or diploma. They can earn a degree, certificate, or diploma at MTC or transfer to another school to complete their studies. Academic students must apply to and enroll at the college.

Academic Programs


Training students—sometimes called "Continuing Education" students—can take individual courses or earn certificates and certifications. They don't have to apply to the college; they can register directly for classes. Training courses don't earn college credit or transfer to other institutions.

Training Programs