4 Types of Respiratory Therapists

4 Types of Respiratory Therapists

How To Become a Respiratory Therapist

Have you been looking into becoming a therapist? Have you found that becoming a respiratory therapist may be the route for you?

If you answered yes to one of these questions, then you should continue reading about how you can become a respiratory therapist. In this article, we also answer the question of where to attend an accredited respiratory therapy program and the different career paths that may interest you.

To begin, students need to establish a foundational understanding of respiratory therapy. At Florida National University, students who attend our Bachelor of Science in Respiratory therapy program gain the knowledge and skills necessary to work as a member of a health care team in a range of settings.

Get started in the growing and rewarding field of respiratory therapy at FNU. Next, we will discuss four types of respiratory therapy roles you could get into.

Critical Care

A critical care respiratory therapist would work in the intensive care unit. Professionals in this role are expected to provide the highest quality of care to critically ill patients.

In this role, patient care is performed through a step-by-step process to identify the problem the patient is experiencing and attempting to solve it. At FNU, students will learn the skills needed to work in a hospital respiratory care department.

Acute Care (hospital)

Acute care respiratory therapists also work in hospitals, like critical care therapists. An acute care respiratory therapist would be in the intensive care unit in a hospital setting.

Patients here are severely ill and often are suffering from multi-organ failure. The ICU provides care for patients in this condition and others.

Respiratory therapists utilize the training they’ve obtain in a certified program and the hands-on experience received while in the field. Acute care respiratory therapists are an important part of a healthcare team.

Emergency Care

Like the roles previously mentioned, as an emergency care respiratory therapist, you can expect to be involved in every trauma that comes through the door. You will also need to be ready to respond immediately.

As an emergency care respiratory therapist, you would be involved in providing education to all respiratory compromised patients. RTs in this role assist with emergency room cases and help others recover from surgery or lung failure.


Respiratory therapists that work in outpatient and homecare facilities would give patients oxygen, mange ventilators and administer drugs as prescribed. Patients that respiratory therapists would serve with these types of conditions would be elderly people and those who have lungs that haven’t fully developed yet.

In these cases, a respiratory therapist would assist in treating the problem that is making it difficult for the patient to breath. Respiratory therapists should also be equipped to manage medical equipment and devices that are needed to help the patient.

FNU’s Bachelor of Science in Respiratory Therapy

By attending FNU’s Bachelor of Science in Respiratory Therapy program, graduates will build the skills needed to enter the field of respiratory therapy right after graduation.

At FNU, students will grow their professional skills in areas of management, cultural diversity, and supervisory skills across various healthcare settings.

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