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.