would you pick RT again?

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Bob in Des Moines, Iowa

90 months ago

If you had to pick a career over again knowing what you know now about RT,

would you still choose to be a respiratory therapist?

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Ron in Apple Valley, California

90 months ago

Maybe ask why YOU want to be a CRT/RRT? Then other can see if it's for you and open a line of feedback :-)

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Loretta in Hamilton, Ohio

90 months ago

Hello,
I've been a respiratory therapist for 18 years now. Trust me there's high's and low's, but you get that with whatever field you go into. Yes, I do at times get burnt out, but in the same breath, I can't imagine doing anything else. I feel blessed to have had the opportunities I've had. I know I have plenty of great stories to tell. The question you ask is a difficult one. On one hand I would say I would of gone into something else, but on the other hand I couldn't imagine doing anything else. I go through burn out from time to time, but the best way to deal with that is to improve, get more education and try different things. I've worked in different areas in the field and I am now looking into sleep studies, so my answer is I would probably do it over again, but I would have completed my education all at one time and I would have tried lots and lots of different things. You have to keep yourself from getting burned out, you have to continue to learn and explore!!

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Diann in Fayetteville, Arkansas

89 months ago

I love people so became an RT 14 yrs. ago.
As I entered the work for I became painfully aware that although RN's go to school for the same amount of time, in order to get their liscence, they know only a little about the pulmonary system. Yet, in a Code Blue, (where the patient is dying due to their heart or lungs), RN's only HELP the RT and DR. save the life. But the pay, the representation, and the chain of command is TOTALLY diffirent!
You learn that the RN's are over RT's! They can, and (more often than not) DO command RT's in hospitals! They can even do RT's jobs if the hospital closes the RT dept. and allows them to, teaching them "On Thursdays"!

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Diann in Fayetteville, Arkansas

89 months ago

What other profession MUST join an organization that was created, to create tests in order to keep their liscense?
I speak of the NBRC. They created tests. They wanted to charge for more tests, so they spoke to the AARC and convinced them that there needed to be another catagory for more tests.
Not enough RT's saw any diffirence in job discription between CRT's and RRT's, (except .25 - .50 cents an hr.). So the NBRC required 3 more collage credits and another test to become an RRT. Still not enough RT's saw a need to become RRT's. So the NBRC put out a scare. CRT's may not be able to work soon, and they created a deadline for the RRT exam.
Would I chose to become an RT again? I'd have to think about it!
In OK. if you don't pay your traffic tickets you won't get your liscense renewed as an RT! If you are an RN or anything else, you can. Or so my boss has told me.
Sounds like a gardener (or anyone else,) can love and care about people with out the pressures.

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Susan D. in West Warwick, Rhode Island

89 months ago

I would absolutely choose to be a respiratory therapist again. I am good at what I do and am proud of my contributions to the healthcare team. I 'cut my teeth' in the RT field by working in a few very progressive community hospitals, an LTAC, and a nationally respected trauma center/teaching hospital.

Now I travel exclusively, sharing my technical expertise with coworkers and physicians at smaller community facilties on shorter term contracts.. where many may have never seen a LiCox monitor, a burn unit, much less worked in one, etc.. I stay abreast of the most current technology by taking longer term contracts at large trauma centers and am axiously awaiting my next contract to begin at such a facility.

I love what I do. The pay (after the first couple of years) was above average, and I would never ever want to be a nurse!

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jfuller in New Orleans, Louisiana

89 months ago

Respiratory care has been good to me. I don't think I would chose this career again due to the limited growth and earning potential.Some Hospital have a career latter, but not most.I don't think I would like to be a nurse but, the have some many different career paths to chose from.Respiratory career growth is nearly null. People get into respiratory director jobs and stay there until they die or get too old.
Now with that being said working three day a week is great.What I'm going to do is travel around as a RRT unitl I find a city that has some other type of program maybe like 16 month certificate to do something else. I am going to use my MBA skills to get out of this field.I am going to keep my licesences current due to the fact hospital work is recession proof.

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Susan D. in West Warwick, Rhode Island

89 months ago

Did you know that with an RRT credential, you can be cross trained for ultrasound, cath lab work,(and challenge their boards) and several other career paths which are quite lucrative. There are a few anesthetist programs which will admit those with a bachelors and an RRT if that appeals to you. We already have the airway management skills so often it takes less time for us to become an anestetist as what we need additional education in is the additional pharmacology so we are ahead of the nurses in that game. Also, with an RRT, you can work without any additional schooling as a perfusion assistant which can open up lots of possibilities there. Of course there are plenty of opportunities in sleep and pulmonary function labs as well, whether you start your own (mega bucks there) or work for an existing one and you can't forget homecare whether you start up your own DME or once again, work for one. Oh yes, pharmaceutical or medical equipment sales is also an option and the earnings potential there is very lucrative.

Travel contracts are great and that's what I do and really enjoy it alot.

Do you really enjoy traveling? How about doing a startup of a company who arranges tours/travel for people with lung disease. Wouldn't it be great fun to lead a group of 20 or 30 COPDers on O2 on a cruise or to europe for example? You can assist with their equipment requirements and give a class or two in managing their diseases and living well! RT's can do really well and generally the group organizer's travel is free. You book the trips for them which are often sold to you at a discount, which you don't pass completely along to your customers/travel group participants and thats where your income comes from.

People who say that the RT profession has limited advancement/development opportunities, in my opinion, have their head buried in the sand and aren't looking at whats really available out there or willing to relocate to where those opportunities are.

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Susan D. in West Warwick, Rhode Island

89 months ago

To get information and the application to sit for CCI credentials go to www.cci-online.org

for information on admission requirements to CaseWestern anesthesia program see www.anesthesiaprogram.com/admissions.htm and yes, there are other programs out there available besides this one.

Advancement opportunites for RRT's with a bachelors exist just like they do for BSN's.

Why become a nurse and clean poo when you don't have to? ;-)

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Sebastien in Terrebonne, Quebec

89 months ago

I've been an RT at a 700 bed hospital for three years now. I work part-time. As soon as I started working in this field, I knew it wasn't for me. We don't have enough advancement possibilities. The best you can hope to get after a few years in the hospital is Assistant-Chief or Chief. PFT is pretty dull. Right now I work in the ICUs NICU, and ER. I think overall this is not a bad job for someone who's looking into a mixture of technical/clinical work. And we're decently paid.

So, no, I wouldn't go back to being an RT if I could turn back time. But I'm not blamming the profession itself for that... but me. I was 16 when I made my decision to go into RT. I later realized that I needed a carrear where you're very independent and would require me to take important decisions.

As of today, I'm still working 2 days a week in Resp. but I've started Law School.

So, in conclusion for you folks out there considering maybe enrolling into your local RT program..., don't hesistate! Make sure you understand the job requirements, and ask a local hospital if they could shadow someone for a day. We do it at my center.

Anyways
Peace out

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Mike in Norcross, Georgia

88 months ago

I'm entering a RT program in the fall. I've been reading these posts, and I just cannot figure out why some people say there is no opportunity for advancement in the RT field. Susan D. has just suggested a whole slew of possibilities, and there are certainly more for anyone with a little ambition. Susan, I couldn't have said it any better; people who say that the RT profession has limited advancement/development opportunities have their head buried in the sand, and certainly have no ambition to better themselves. I think these people might have a hard time advancing no matter what field they choose. So don't let one of these people discourage you from what is a great field, with endless opportunities.

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Susan D. in Louisville, Kentucky

88 months ago

Cheers to you Mike.. yes there are a few areas of the country where respiratory therapists are considered to be merely neb jockeys but that certainly isn't the case over all, and I suspect that it remains that way in those areas due to lack of motivation/career development. And yes, I'm in Kentucky now.. ahhhh the life of travel. Let the Derby begin! ;-)

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rtr in Paramus, New Jersey

88 months ago

hey susan, i hope you know it's not only about taking pictures in sonography or cath lab. i hope you don't think it is just easy that you can easily be cross trained and you will be just an expert on it from doing it for a few months. cath lab can be done ojt if you are an x ray tech before because you know the principles behind the equipment and the hazards behind it, same as ultrasound except it must be done through formal education. anything in the medical field is not easy and i give high regards and high respect to respiratory therapists or anyone in this broad range of the medical field. besides do you even know your cross sectional anatomy and pathology of the vascular system to help the doctors diagnose the illness of pts. if the sonographer don't see it, the md can't see it either and 9/10 times the md requires the input from the sonographer and 9/10 times the sonographer's reading is correct. no i don't believe rrts should cross train to us or cath lab regardless you have a BA and it's not as "easy" as it seems that other health professionals "think" so like Oh okay push button, zap okay next! you can go to it if you went to school for it, that is another story.

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Susan D. in Louisville, Kentucky

88 months ago

rtr in Paramus, New Jersey said: hey susan, i hope you know it's not only about taking pictures in sonography or cath lab. i hope you don't think it is just easy that you can easily be cross trained and you will be just an expert on it from doing it for a few months. cath lab can be done ojt if you are an x ray tech before because you know the principles behind the equipment and the hazards behind it, same as ultrasound except it must be done through formal education. anything in the medical field is not easy and i give high regards and high respect to respiratory therapists or anyone in this broad range of the medical field. besides do you even know your cross sectional anatomy and pathology of the vascular system to help the doctors diagnose the illness of pts. if the sonographer don't see it, the md can't see it either and 9/10 times the md requires the input from the sonographer and 9/10 times the sonographer's reading is correct. no i don't believe rrts should cross train to us or cath lab regardless you have a BA and it's not as "easy" as it seems that other health professionals "think" so like Oh okay push button, zap okay next! you can go to it if you went to school for it, that is another story.

Wow, I really don't recall anyone saying anything remotely like that but only that we are able to get cross training and challenge those boards... should someone decide they want to do that. It's merely a few options among many that are open to us. I know several respiratory therapists personally who have been cross-trained to the hilt.

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rtr in Dumont, New Jersey

88 months ago

i have no grudges to no respiratory therapists having to advance and further their knowledge; however, how would you feel a sonographer or an x ray tech just start to learn respiratory therapy by ojt (off the job training) w/o going through the formal way or just a salesman get to do it. I guarantee everyone of you will say that is not right and should never happen! Well it is the same way how i feel when certain hospitals in certain states start to cross train other health professionals where they do not have basic knowledge or license to do so at least. This is one of the many reasons why ASRT has been fighting for the CARE bill to get passed for the patients' sake and health professionals in the radiology field today. Honestly I do not have any grudge against you Susan but it is the same way as the state of Pennsylvania has been doing to the field of nuclcear medicine just to save money even though it would deter the patient's safety or diagnosis just to save MONEY! Basically, they try to train x ray techs to become nuclear medicine techs w/o the formal way and it is quite ethically and dangerously wrong w/o the patient's consent or knowledge besides most of the pts are geriatics and the chances are if their insurance finds out they are not qualified, their exams won't be REIMBURSED. It is not even like a nuclear medicine student doing it. I believe you that you know some respiratory therapists cross trained but it doesn't mean it is right in the past or even now or even in the future. The people that you know who did get cross trained can challenge it but no way should the ARRT should allow that esp the person doesn't have a license to have knowledge about ionizing radiation in cath. As for ultrasound, they have their own rules in which should change also but most likely you can get cross trained too and take the test because you have a BA (even though it should be done formally) if a us tech is willing to do it because it is not nonionizing radiation

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rtr in Dumont, New Jersey

88 months ago

whether you believe me or not, i know at least today ARRT will not allow someone from the respiratory field or any field regardless of your BA degree would take the registry exam in cath lab w/o any credentials as a radiographer. Honestly, I don't know any x ray tech with a right mind who is willing to cross train someone outside our field to teach someone how to perform cath lab procedures and no offense to any respiratory therapist but it's the truth and we do not even let a cardiac cath RN to do it. You can do it only if you go back to school and again that's another story. This also goes for any registry exam that requires ionizing radiation. source: www.arrt.org Most likely other people outside the radiology field can try MRI or US but even that begins to be secluded and should be only to radiology professinals only. Maybe you will get lucky and find a MRI tech or a US tech who is willing to train you off the job and you will be able to take the registry exam. FYI, I AM NOT SAYING AT ALL RESPIRATORY THERAPISTS CANNOT ADVANCE BUT I am also saying you cannot just cross train in the radiology field easily and expect to take the registry exams either regardless with a BA. again if you don't believe me, Susan or anyone, go ask a radiology tech or contact ARRT. I am just doing this because I care about my field that much since I am in it already and that I want that Care Bill to finally get passed not only for the workers sake like myself but for patients everywhere nationwide! I bet this also goes for you Susan if they were doing this to your respiratory field by having others outside the respiratory field like I would say a RN get cross train to learn respiratory therapy w/o formal education.

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Hommy RT R in Olympia, Washington

88 months ago

I agree with

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Hommy RT R in Olympia, Washington

88 months ago

I agree with rtr in Dumont, you are so on the ball with your comments... I hope that CARE bill get's passed it would be great for everyone in our field...if your too damn lazy to go to school or to take the registry for other modalities you should get the heck out. And for all of you old timers complaing about working in the field for so long and not having a job, you need to keep up with technology or get the heck out. You have to be willing to learn new equipment and techniques. Enough said!!!

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rtr in Dumont, New Jersey

88 months ago

btw, respiratory therapists, HOMMY is only referring to radiology professionals NOT RESPIRATORY THERAPISTS. see initials rt (respiratory therapist) and RTR (registered technologist of radiography), almost the same but not. I just wanted to say this before anyone esp in the respiratory field misunderstand his comment.

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Hommy RT R in Olympia, Washington

88 months ago

well i know about that, I'm a radiology tech not a respitory tech maybe i should have been Hommy RT (r) ARRT anyway I'm not crudential crazy like some other people here.

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geoian2002@yahoo.com in Bainbridge Island, Washington

88 months ago

Susan D, thank you for your relevant and informative posts. You outlined so many career possibilities in Respiratory Care. As a first-year student I find it encouraging to read the positive comments of an RRT who seems to place patient care and professional excellence over status and turf warfare. I am now even more certain that I can continue to be challenged and rewarded in a field that will keep expanding in need, scope of practice and autonomy. Cheers, Susan.

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Ted in Cape Coral, Florida

88 months ago

Hommy RT R in Olympia, Washington said: well i know about that, I'm a radiology tech not a respitory tech maybe i should have been Hommy RT (r) ARRT anyway I'm not crudential crazy like some other people here.

We're therapists, you guys are the techs

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Linda Bishop in Kansas City, Missouri

88 months ago

jfuller in New Orleans, Louisiana said: Respiratory care has been good to me. I don't think I would chose this career again due to the limited growth and earning potential.Some Hospital have a career latter, but not most.I don't think I would like to be a nurse but, the have some many different career paths to chose from.Respiratory career growth is nearly null. People get into respiratory director jobs and stay there until they die or get too old.
Now with that being said working three day a week is great.What I'm going to do is travel around as a RRT unitl I find a city that has some other type of program maybe like 16 month certificate to do something else. I am going to use my MBA skills to get out of this field.I am going to keep my licesences current due to the fact hospital work is recession proof.

I manage a branch office for Favorite Healthcare Staffing, Inc. and am looking for RRT's to travel toe Eastern Washington State. If you or your friends are interested please contact Favorite Healthcare Staffing or apply online at www.favoritestaffing.com Thank you!

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Hommy RT R in Olympia, Washington

88 months ago

Ted thanks for the clarification...being a therapists puts you on the same level as a physician....not...dude your the same as us...if I'm a nuclear medicine tech, does that mean I'm a therapist because I administer radioactive isotopes to treat cancer patients....uh technically yes...however for your sake you can be the the therapist and we will be the techs...nice post TED!! You Jack!

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Mike in Norcross, Georgia

88 months ago

It's nice to see everyone getting along so well. This is quite an entertaining pissing contest.

I thought this was a respiratory therapy forum. What are you non-RT people doing here? Do you read through all the posts looking for things to argue about? By the way, It's hard to take someone seriously when they use such horrible English and grammar.

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rolinda41@hotmail.com in San Diego, California

88 months ago

Mike in Norcross, Georgia said: It's nice to see everyone getting along so well. This is quite an entertaining pissing contest.

I thought this was a respiratory therapy forum. What are you non-RT people doing here? Do you read through all the posts looking for things to argue about? By the way, It's hard to take someone seriously when they use such horrible English and grammar.

I agree. Although everyone is welcome to join these forums, denigrating others is not necessary. In our profession, we are all essential. In the field of healthcare each provider is of equal importance. We all work together as a team for the well being of our patients. I wish you well. Good journey.

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Ted in Cape Coral, Florida

88 months ago

Hommy RT R in Olympia, Washington said: Ted thanks for the clarification...being a therapists puts you on the same level as a physician....not...dude your the same as us...if I'm a nuclear medicine tech, does that mean I'm a therapist because I administer radioactive isotopes to treat cancer patients....uh technically yes...however for your sake you can be the the therapist and we will be the techs...nice post TED!! You Jack!

Just correcting you, most people practicing in the respiratory field are therapists , the respiratory techs are the low guys on the scale in the respiratory department. No need to be so defensive tech. lol

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inneedofhelp in Bowie, Maryland

88 months ago

ok i just graduated from respiratory school last year but the school i went wasn't really good they just throw materials at us but didnt really get us prepared for the board to make long story short i've taken the crt several times couldnt pass that i got so mad and decided to go into nursing kettering didnt really help me either just dont know what to do can anybody please help me?

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Susan D. in Louisville, Kentucky

88 months ago

If I were you, I would contact the school you attended and tell them that you have been unable to pass your entry level boards after several attempts to see if they can offer you some sort of remediation courses. I would think that they would allow you to audit the classes pertaining to areas of the exam that you are having such a hard time with, especially if your course grades were decent. Having grads who can't pass the board exams sure doesn't make them look good. Your exam scores will tell you (and them) what areas you had a hard time with and give them a clue as to where they need to re-vamp their courses, especially if they had a high failure rate.

It surprises many people just how difficult the NBRC exams can be. It is extremely important for prospective RT students to choose a school with a reputation for excellence and a high pass rate on the board exams. When I was in school, we were often told that respiratory therapy is one of the most difficult/challenging of the allied health professions, and our program drop outs generally went on to complete other allied or nursing programs with much less difficulty, but if your heart was set on respiratory why not try auditing some classes and re-reading your textbooks?

I never tried the Kettering Seminars although many people rave about them and say they helped them alot. I'm thinking that if you repeatedly failed after one of their seminars they will allow you to re-attend for free or refund your money.. I'm not real sure on this though.

Good luck to you.

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Yvonne P. in Saint Joseph, Missouri

87 months ago

I am starting RT school in Oct08, and i am a lil scared but i feel in my heart this is what i am meant to do! My only concern is that i have met a few people who could not pass the exam and just gave up! I have never had any test problems...and i feel that even if i fail a few times after paying 23K to go to school i will take it til i pass or die trying! I enjoyed reading all the post, helps me get prepared!

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cheyl in Toledo, Ohio

87 months ago

i,ve been a therapist for 23 years. still love what i do. i have NEVER understood why we as a profession haven't recieved our just dues when it comes to pay, or recognition. i don't recommend this field to many people. just for the people who don't want to make the quick bucks like most nurses nowadays! i chew these people up for breakfast!!! if you want to make big bucks be a nurse. respiratory is for dedicated people!!!!!!!

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Amy in Jacksonville, Florida

82 months ago

I've been a RRT for 15 years. Yes - every job has its ups and downs. Yes - we are the redheaded stepchildren of medicine. If you are out looking for 'glory and praise' in your job, this may not be for you. If you want to help people, this IS the job for you. We are an important part of the medical team. Anytime a patient is in distress, RT is first to be called. We are the ABC (airway,breathing and cardiac) of the team. It does get to me that we are not more recognized or are referred to as nurses, but I know that I am vital to a patients recovery. I know that at night I can rest my head on my pillow knowing that I 'did good'. Not every hero is recognized.

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Jenni in Toledo, Ohio

82 months ago

Amy, I have been a RT for 21 years and when someone calls me a nurese, I tell them, "I'm not a nurse, I just play one on TV." lol I find that mixing a good sense of humor with the personal knowledge of what I do, helps me retain a good sense of balance.
Hang in there!

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Nancy in Augusta, Georgia

82 months ago

Diann in Fayetteville, Arkansas said: I love people so became an RT 14 yrs. ago.
As I entered the work for I became painfully aware that although RN's go to school for the same amount of time, in order to get their liscence, they know only a little about the pulmonary system. Yet, in a Code Blue, (where the patient is dying due to their heart or lungs), RN's only HELP the RT and DR. save the life. But the pay, the representation, and the chain of command is TOTALLY diffirent!
You learn that the RN's are over RT's! They can, and (more often than not) DO command RT's in hospitals! They can even do RT's jobs if the hospital closes the RT dept. and allows them to, teaching them "On Thursdays"!

I have a BS degree in respiratory therapy. I used to think the same way you do, that is, until I enrolled in nursing school. The lungs are not the only organ in the body. The heart, brain, liver, and kidneys, are vital organs too. Nurses have a much broader knowledge of patient care, and that is why they are favored more by hospital administration. Nurses are a "jack of all trades" and a master of none. I am different though, I am a nurse with a speciality.:)

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RT TO MD in Independence, Missouri

81 months ago

I've been an r.t. for 13 years with a bachelor's degree and RRT. I have to say, we have a glass ceiling in our profession. Those that disagree are either naive because they haven't been in the field very long, i.e. prospective students, or those that are eternal optimists. I've supervised and have done just about everyting an rrt can do. Still, I find myself sitting on sidelines amongst nurses and doctors. Until they really need me. Anyway, what I'm saying is, if you want to do something with your life, then just go to medical school or even P.A. school. Don't waste your time in respiratory school unless you're the type of person that's content being "Joe the Plumber" for the rest of your miserable lives.

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Brian in Grovetown, Georgia

80 months ago

I have my BS in RT and have been in the biz for a little over 25 years. As many of you have pointed out, the opportunity for advancement in respiratory therapy is limited. My advice is to do different aspects of respiratory therapy to keep interested. Work adults, neonates, and pediatrics. Try PFTs and home health, management, administration, whatever. Personally, I still like hoofing around on the floors (ICU is overrated) but I have done RT from one extreme to another. It is still a lot of fun to me. Get good at your job. It is a good feeling when your hospital peers say something like "I'm glad you're here" when a problem arises. It shows they respect you and that they are confident in your skills. If you have been in the business for more than 5 years, you should have personally saved at least one person's life. That's something to feel good about. If you choose, however, to wait on the sidelines until summoned you will always be bored and feel useless. It is up to the person and his sense of self importance to decide whether he wants to be part of a larger picture. I love my profession but I hate the bureaucratic hospital environment we now work in. Beats digging ditches, though.

I take exception to "RT to MD" who implied that you are a loser if you go to RT school. This is the rhetoric of an unhappy person and he should leave the profession. I recognize that a person should be happy with his life and profession, and "RT to MD", with no more than 13 years experience has plenty of time to use his knowledge in another profession. With his attitude I can only hope his pen-name in this forum is only a name and not a plan. Have a nice day! Brian

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RT TO MD in Independence, Missouri

80 months ago

I'm not implying that RT's are losers. Most the RT's I know are fairly smart people who, 1) are content with being the middle man, or 2) had a situation in their life where their circumstances prohibited them from seeking further education. You're one of the few RT's I know that love your job (Brian) so kudos to you. Healthcare is a great field if you're interested in helping others and there's room for everyone's level of ambition. (From housekeeper to physician) At this state, I'm not content with being an RT. It's just my ambition level. I like to have more autonomy with my profession. That's all. I don't think I'm an unhappy person or should leave the profession. I do plan on being and MD so if you ever see that miserable doctor barking orders at the RT's then you'll know it's me! Good luck all and yes, there's nothing wrong with being an RT. Just don't expect too much.

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RT prospect in Los Gatos, California

80 months ago

RT TO MD in Independence, Missouri said: I'm not implying that RT's are losers. Most the RT's I know are fairly smart people who, 1) are content with being the middle man, or 2) had a situation in their life where their circumstances prohibited them from seeking further education. You're one of the few RT's I know that love your job (Brian) so kudos to you. Healthcare is a great field if you're interested in helping others and there's room for everyone's level of ambition. (From housekeeper to physician) At this state, I'm not content with being an RT. It's just my ambition level. I like to have more autonomy with my profession. That's all. I don't think I'm an unhappy person or should leave the profession. I do plan on being and MD so if you ever see that miserable doctor barking orders at the RT's then you'll know it's me! Good luck all and yes, there's nothing wrong with being an RT. Just don't expect too much.

I am currently in RT school but do not want to do this all my life, how can one go from an RT to an MD? do you have to recieve a biology BS or is it possible to simply have any other BS take the MCAT and apply?

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RRT in Nashville, Tennessee

80 months ago

Yes, you'll have to get all your prerequisite courses necessary for medical school and take the MCAT. Whatever people say, don't take the shortcut. They don't pay off in the long run. I know there's Caribean schools and overseas medical programs that will take your money ($20,000 admission fee) but don't be lazy and take the easy way out. Those doctors are downright scary and no reputable hospital will ever give you a second look if there's any type of caribean medical school on your resume. You'll end up in the middle of nowhere and will hate it. I don't consider those guys real docs anyway. So to answer your question, figure out what medical school you want to attend and what the pre-requisites are. Work hard in getting a high GPA and score better than 28 on your MCAT. Don't take shortcuts and you'll find out you'll be much happier with yourself. Good luck.

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sean in Carlsbad, California

80 months ago

I'm new student at age of 46 years old that I'm going to school for RT. I have been in sales field for past 15 years. I get burn out in that field. I think what ever any body wants in life the can get it. May be I will get burn out but still have good future job.

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Sebastien in Terrebonne, Quebec

80 months ago

I think RT TO MD narrowed this whole debate down to a few words: there's nothing wrong with being an RT. Just don't expect too much.

And quite honestly... I agree 100%. Everyone who considers joing a respiratory program must realize that beforehand... or they will be miserable in their profession!

For some, RT might be exactly what they we're looking for! And good for them!

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RT prospect in Morgan Hill, California

80 months ago

RRT in Nashville, Tennessee said: Yes, you'll have to get all your prerequisite courses necessary for medical school and take the MCAT. Whatever people say, don't take the shortcut. They don't pay off in the long run. I know there's Caribean schools and overseas medical programs that will take your money ($20,000 admission fee) but don't be lazy and take the easy way out. Those doctors are downright scary and no reputable hospital will ever give you a second look if there's any type of caribean medical school on your resume. You'll end up in the middle of nowhere and will hate it. I don't consider those guys real docs anyway. So to answer your question, figure out what medical school you want to attend and what the pre-requisites are. Work hard in getting a high GPA and score better than 28 on your MCAT. Don't take shortcuts and you'll find out you'll be much happier with yourself. Good luck.

So can i just take the prereqs? because i already have a BS and dont want to have to get a BS in biology all over again and spend 4 more years

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RT TO MD in Independence, Missouri

80 months ago

I think it's awesome that you're going back to school at 46! I don't care what people say, we're living longer and 40's is truly the new 30's. Anymore, 60's is still considered young. I know that sounds crazy but I have seen many people live to be in their 80's and beyond. If you look at the big picture, you still have a lot of life ahead. I plan on working til I'm in my 70's so to me, 46 is nothing to start a new career. Good luck.

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RT TO MD in Independence, Missouri

80 months ago

Thanks Sebastien from Quebec. I've always loved Canadian's and know you guys are logical with your thinking. Unlike my American counterparts (just joking). Anyway, you're absolutely right Sebastien in what I'm trying say. I'm not knocking RT's. I'm just being honest in that it's okay if you have a limited amount of ambition or if life circumstances have made you content with being a respiratory therapist. Know what respiratory therapy encompasses and if that is what you think will make you happy, then go for it. If not, then look elsewhere. I'm not sugar coating anything when I say this, "RT'S HAVE A GLASS CEILING". Don't fool yourself into thinking that you're a pulmonologist or anything greater than a person that pushes buttons (vents), draw blood (ABG's), or neb jockey. If that's what you want to do for the rest of your life, fine. If you think taking orders is not what you want to do, then look into other fields. Personally, I'm not a miserable person as the previous poster Brian from Georgia implied, but a realist.

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RT TO MD in Independence, Missouri

80 months ago

Hey RT Prospect from CA. To answer your question, it's great that you have a B.S. degree but you'll have to take all the courses needed for your MCAT. For example, if you need to take Chemistry 1 and 2. Organic 1 and 2, as well as a lot of science courses then it's still required to get into med school. There's a lot of post-baculareate to pre-med programs out there. The science classes are the main things. With a bachelor's degree, you pretty much have all the basic courses done. It'll take about two years of science classes in order to sit for the MCAT and get looked at by med schools. Since you're from the great state of CA, it's very competitive out there. Make sure you make at least a 3.8 GPA and score 30's on your MCAT. Unfortunately, you live in a state where there's a lot of smart people so make sure you're competitive with your GPA and outgoing on your interview. I love Asians but in California, they drive the GPA and MCAT scores way up, so make sure you study hard and be disciplined. Good luck.

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kay in Dayton, Ohio

79 months ago

Hi
I am starting the rt programe in fall and been reading all these comments about how this field doesn't have much job opportunities and how it is boring and hard working. I am little bit worried now. I have twins and they have just started school so, now i have little time to study and i did some research couple months ago and found out that this is one of the fast growing field and now i am reding all this. Can some body please help me if this a good career for me. I am almost thirty. I went to business school for m.b.a and i didn't like it so i decided to go into someother field. I don't think i will get more opportunities for studing after this because i have to take care of my house and make some money to help out my family. I don't mind if its a boring and stressful job as long i will make good money. Can you please help me to figure it out weather i should start rt or should i think of something else before i start rt. I have read that crt and rrt exams are really hard to pass. Are they really? cuz i have two kids and i don't think i have alot of time to study.

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Freddy Soloman Jr. in West Bloomfield, Michigan

79 months ago

You would not make a good RT...sorry to be blunt....No time for study= Failure

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RRT in Nashville, Tennessee

79 months ago

If you think you could live off of about 40k/year then you'll be fine. Starting out with no experience, you won't be making more than 40k. Keep in mind, this is just a general rule of thumb because the pay scale can be a bit higher or a bit less, depending on where you live. As far as passing the exams, don't worry about it right now. Focus on studying hard and getting decent grades in the classroom. I know a lot of single parents who do just fine being an r.t. so don't let people talk you out of it. Sounds like you're quickly running out of alternatives so just do what you have to for you and your children. If you do fine in r.t. school, you'll do fine on the exams. The ones that fail the boards are the same ones that struggled in school. Also, keep in mind that you can always retake your boards. I've known people who've taken their RRT 8 times before they finally passed! Your name badge still says RRT in the end, regardless of how many times you failed the test. Good luck to ya.

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Alexia in Los Angeles, California

79 months ago

i just finished school couple months ago. i to heard that RT is growing in demand and chose it over nursing. I figured i could make almost as much as an RN and spend less patient contact compared to RN's. A few months after graduation i took my CRT and passed the first time. I am not married and have no kids and was still being finacially supported by my parents so i hade lots of time t focus on my studying. A month later took my RRT and passed also the first time, the next day went out to look for a job thinking that within a month i would land a job. I has now been 7 months and i have not gotten a job. I am now considering going back to school.

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Fredrick Soloman Sr. in West Bloomfield, Michigan

79 months ago

Alexia, have you looked out of state? No job in 7 months? Did you go to one of those online schools?

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