Respiratory Therapy Programs in Rhode Island - RI
Education and Continuing Education Requirements for Rhode Island Respiratory Therapists
Licensees can obtain employment with an Associate’s Degree earned through online or campus based Rhode Island respiratory therapy schools. Bachelor Degree programs are also available for those who want to pursue further education. However, all respiratory therapist programs, whether taken at a college, university, hospital, or other medical facility, must be approved by the National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC), and fully accredited by the Committee on Accreditation for Respiratory Care.
Licensure for respiratory therapists in Rhode Island takes place every two years. All licensees need to complete 12 hours of continuing education during this two-year licensure period in order to retain their licenses. Coursework can include recognized presentations and conferences, in-service training, and online programs. All continuing education credits must be approved by the NBRC. The credit hour breakdown is different for formal educational programs, such as workshops, symposia, and self-study courses, and for formal presentations approved by the NBRC. Formal education programs provide one credit for each hour of study. Formal presentations, such as professional seminars, entitle the licensee to two credits for each hour of attendance. Licensees who fail to complete the continuing education requirements will have their licenses denied, suspended, or revoked.
After successfully completing the NBRC entry-level examination (Certified Respiratory Therapist), licensees can take the NBRC’s Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT) examination. Becoming a registered respiratory therapist opens new doors for the therapist, allowing him or her to participate directly in the development of patient treatment plans and preventive healthcare. Working under the supervision of a doctor, registered therapists also enjoy independence when treating patients for respiratory issues. The RRT exam must be taken within three years of obtaining certification or the licensee will need to take the CRT exam again before being allowed to sit for the RRT exam.