* An Associate of Science degree is considered a terminal degree. The decision on course transferability rests with the receiving institution.
Keiser University’s Associate of Science degree in Respiratory Therapy prepares students for employment as respiratory therapists under the supervision of licensed physicians. A Respiratory Therapist provides education, diagnostic testing and respiratory therapy in the management of conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, acute cardio-respiratory failure, asthma, and other pulmonary pathologies.
Successful completion of the program qualifies graduates to receive an Associate of Science degree, and become eligible to sit for the national accreditation exams for the designation of the Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT) and apply for state license as a respiratory therapist. The national examinations consist of the Therapist Multiple-Choice Examination (TCM) and the Clinical Simulation Examination(CSE) offered by the National Board of Respiratory Care (NBRC).
Information on the exam process is available through the NBRC at www.nbrc.org.
Responsibilities of a respiratory therapist include:
- Identifying lung and breathing disorders and recommending treatment methods.
- Interviewing patients and doing chest physical exams to determine what kind of therapy is best for their condition.
- Consulting with physicians to recommend a change in therapy, based on patient evaluation.
- Analyzing breath, tissue, and blood specimens to determine levels of oxygen and other gases.
- Managing ventilators and artificial airway devices for patients who can’t breathe normally on their own.
- Responding to Code Blue or other urgent calls for care.
- Educating patients and families about lung disease so they can maximize their recovery.