Enter the Spotlight During National Respiratory Care Week
Dallas, TX (October 15, 2010)
National Respiratory Care Week, an annual event that recognizes the
work of respiratory therapists (RTs) and the importance of lung health,
is set for October 24-30, 2010 and is sponsored by the American Association
for Respiratory Care (AARC).
People who are lucky enough to
take breathing for granted may have never even heard of a “respiratory
therapist.” But for those with asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary
disease, cystic fibrosis, and other conditions, “RTs,” as they are know
for short, are key to breathing easier. National Respiratory Care Week
is a great time for everyone to learn more about these vital health
“Respiratory therapists work
in hospitals, long-term care facilities, home care settings, and doctor's
offices to assist physicians in caring for their patients with pulmonary
problems,” says Tim Myers, AARC President. “You'll find us managing
ventilators in the ICU, performing the pulmonary function tests that
are used to diagnose lung disease, and delivering respiratory care throughout
hospitals and in the emergency department.”
RTs also spend time educating
chronic lung disease patients about their conditions and the medications
used to treat them so they will be better able to stay at home and out
of the hospital, and they work in pulmonary rehabilitation programs
to help people regain some of their lost functioning.
The field is full of great job
opportunities as well. “The Bureau of Labor Statistics says employment
of RTs is expected to grow at a much faster pace than the average for
all occupations, increasing by 21% between 2008 and 2018,” continues
Myers. Entry into the profession requires a degree from a two year college
program, although many RTs also hold bachelor's degrees or above.
To learn more about careers in
respiratory care, visit the AARC's website at http://www.aarc.org/career.
Call your local hospital
and ask for the Director of Respiratory Care. They can tell you more
about lung disease and the work of the respiratory therapist.
Be aware of these other special
dates and projects that are also upcoming and may provide you with news
opportunities for which a respiratory therapist could be made available.
A national campaign sponsored
by NASCAR and others to screen people for COPD risk
November – National
COPD Month (http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/lung/copd/)
This month is celebrated in the
U.S. in order to raise awareness of Chronic Obstruction Pulmonary Disease,
which includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis.
November 18 – World
COPD Day (http://www.goldcopd.com/)
A day to raise awareness around
Year of the Lung
This has been a year-long focus
on building awareness of lung health.
About the AARC
The American Association for
Respiratory Care, headquartered in Dallas, is a professional association
of respiratory therapists that focuses primarily on respiratory therapy
education and research. The organization's goals are to ensure that
respiratory patients receive safe and effective care from qualified
professionals as well as supporting respiratory health care providers.
The association continues to advocate on behalf of pulmonary patients
for appropriate access to respiratory services provided by qualified
professionals. Further information about the AARC and how to become
a respiratory therapist are available at www.AARC.org