Breathing issues can make life more difficult and if that problem is caused by a chronic condition, it may be time for outside help. When this level is reached, people will turn to a respiratory therapist. The demand for respiratory therapists are continuing to grow because people are living longer lives. However, babies are also surviving being born prematurely thanks to respiratory therapists in the Neo-natal Intensive Care Units.
Job Growth Potential
One of the big things that help determine whether or not to go into the job field is the growth potential. Respiratory therapy is in the medical field, and is among the many positions that are in high demand. It is expected to keep growing and reach a 30-percent increase by 2020. This means that by 2020, over 30,000 new jobs will be created and need to be filled.
Respiratory therapists do everything from helping the elderly as their lungs begin to fail, to helping people who need emergency care following a major health event. Most therapists will make roughly $26 an hour, but the wage increases up to $85,000 a year depending on where the work is needed.
School is Easier
Unlike most programs in the medical field, respiratory therapist school often takes only a couple of years to get the basic associates. However, if you do want to move up further in the industry, you will need your Bachelor’s degree. What this means though is you can get your associate’s degree, find a job, and then complete your Bachelor’s at a later date.
If you want a job that offers you flexibility in the job market, the respiratory therapist field is one for you. This one degree will allow you to work directly with patients and with physicians. You will start with the basic exam to see where the patients are, but you will also help create a treatment plan and carry it out. Physicians will depend on you to assist with the treatment plan and administer medications that will help patients breathe better. This may also mean you help patients breathe on a ventilator or use at-home equipment. Finally, educating patients is necessary to help people who do not understand how smoking is hurting them or find breathing issues they may not be aware of.
The field of respiratory therapy is the one for you if you like to problem solve, as well as love to help others. This field requires people to be compassionate and patient, but also strong enough to work with people who are not wanting to change. You will need to be able to read medical records and know basic math to administer the correct dosage of medication. Respiratory therapy is a great stepping stone into the medical field, but one that allows you to be happy from the beginning.