Respiratory Therapy Programs in Tennessee - TN

Nationally, employment of respiratory therapists is expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations.  According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of respiratory therapists is expected to grow 19% from 2006 to 2016. With 162 hospitals in Tennessee and over 75% of respiratory therapy jobs nationwide are working in the hospital setting, this state allows for plenty of opportunity for a Respiratory Therapist.  Programs are abundant with 460 accredited online and campus based programs throughout the nation, making it easy to get your start in the profession.

Continuing Education Requirements/Licensure renewal

In order to keep current certification, respiratory therapists must fulfill the requirements of the Continuing Competency Program by the NBRC.  There are three options available: complete 30 hours of continuing education through Tennessee respiratory therapy schools within 5 years of certification, retake the exam for the highest certification held within the 5 year period, or pass an NRBC certification exam not yet taken.  Some examples of approved continuing education consist of lectures, symposiums, and workshops.  Continuing education must be an accredited by the American Association for Respiratory Care (AARC) or be an approved provider by state agency to be accepted by the NBRC.   Continuing education must be submitted to the Continuing Competency Program prior to the expiration date of certification or the certification will expire.  After completing and submitting continuing education contact hours, certification will be renewed.  Those with active status will be required to pay a $25 annual renewal fee and must provide proof of employment under medical direction acceptable to the NBRC.

In order to renew licensure in Tennessee, respiratory therapists must complete 10 contact hours of continuing education each year and apply for a license renewal with the board of respiratory care.  Renewal applications can be completed online, where proof of continuing education contact hours can be submitted.

Military Careers for Tennessee Respiratory Therapists

The US military also employs respiratory therapists at all levels of service.  Jobs may be at the civilian level or as an enlisted officer.  Since the terrorist attacks on American soil, respiratory therapists are being used for the treatment of injured soldiers both in the states and overseas in Iraq.  With anthrax and white phosphorus being used in attacks, respiratory therapists will be at the forefront for treatment.  Also with the number of burn victims increasing from attacks, the use of ventilators has increased, which in turn increases the need for health care practitioners who are trained in there use, as in respiratory therapists.


Through campus or online programs, aspiring Respiratory Therapists in Memphis, Nashville, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Clarksville and Murfreesboro, Tennessee may be able to prepare themselves for the possibility of employment in some of the largest hospitals and healthcare facilities in the state including the Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Memorial Hospital, Jackson-Madison County General Hospital and Nashville's Baptist Hospital.

Respiratory Therapy Schools

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            Bachelor of Science in Respiratory Therapy
            • Ranked 23rd among the Best Online Graduate Education Programs in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
            • A public research university with an enrollment of more than 42,000 students.
            • Its student-faculty ratio is 16:1, and 43.1% of its classes have fewer than 20 students.
            • Has been the source of many discoveries creating positive change for society including co-op education and the oral polio vaccine since its founding in 1819.
            • Provides distance learning advisors to assist students.
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            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Respiratory Therapy - Associate of Applied Science
            • Committed to excellence in education since 1916 with a rich history of helping students find successful careers.
            • Offers more than 50 programs including criminal justice, technology, business, and more.
            • Its fully-accredited campuses offer day, evening, and online classes.
            • Provides tutoring at no additional charge to assist during stressful times.
            • Revises curriculum continually to keep pace with improvements in technology and the increasing needs of business and industry.
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            BS Health Science (Post PTA)
            South College , Knoxville
            • Ranked among the Best Grad Schools for their Physician Assistant program in 2015 by U.S. News & World Report.
            • Campus is 56,000 square feet of modern lecture classrooms, specialty laboratories with state-of-the art equipment, writing and math lab, student center, and more.
            • Programmatic accreditation from several organizations, including the American Bar Association (ABA) and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).
            • Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
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            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            AAS Physical Therapist Assistant
            • Flexible scheduling options are available; day, afternoon, and evening classes are available Monday through Saturday and terms begin in October, January, April, and June.
            • Offers bachelor’s, associate’s, and certificate programs in legal studies, business administration, healthcare, nursing, accounting, and more.
            • Assists students with various academic and career advising services.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS).
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            • Accredited
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            • Provides students the opportunity to train at home in their spare time to get their high school diploma, train for a new career, or enhance current skills.
            • Offers programs in psychology/social work, business management, medical billing, criminal justice, and more.
            • Member of the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA), the Canadian Network for Innovation in Education (CNIE), and the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE).
            • Features a fully flexible schedule with no classes to attend, leaving the study pace up to the student.
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            • Online Courses