What do respiratory therapists do?
Respiratory therapists provide the hands-on care that helps people recover from a wide range of medical conditions. Therapists get to know their patients, and their patients’ families, and have the opportunity to help them through trying times. Whenever breathing is an issue, they are there.
Respiratory therapists provide treatment, evaluation, monitoring and management of patients with breathing disorders or cardiovascular problems. The care they provide includes administration of oxygen, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, management of mechanical ventilators, administering drugs to the lungs, monitoring cardiopulmonary systems, and measuring lung function.
Respiratory therapists treat all types of patients, ranging from premature infants whose lungs are not fully developed to elderly people with lung disease. They fulfill a vital role that saves and improves lives.
Respiratory Therapy, BS: The Fine Print
- To be considered for admission to the Respiratory Therapy program, an applicant must first be accepted as a Utah Tech University student. Then, the applicant must complete a separate application to the this program.
- Everything one needs to know about applying to UT can be found on the Admissions website.
- The Respiratory Therapy program is admission-limited meaning that, through a competitive application process, one cohort of 12-16 students is admitted to the program per year. The start date for the program is the first day of classes of the UT fall semester.
- Admission to the Respiratory Therapy program is based upon academic performance in both general education and specific program prerequisite courses, in addition to other selection criteria, including:
- Submission of a complete program application on or before the deadline
- Minimum cumulative GPA of 2.25 or higher
- Completion of specified program prerequisite courses with a grade of C or better
- Individual interview with the Respiratory Therapy Program Selection Committee
- Science courses must have been taken within the past five years (CHEM 1010/1015 or higher; BIOL 2320/2325 and BIOL 2420/2425).
- Additional factors that will be taken into consideration for program admission include previous health care experience and weighted GPA in specific prerequisite courses.
- Classes are taught at the Russell C. Taylor Health Science Center building of the Utah Tech University campus. Specific class schedules will vary each semester; here is the current program schedule, by semester.
- 1st Semester
- Tuesday and Wednesday, 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
- 2nd & 3rd Semesters
- Tuesday and Wednesday, 9:00 am – 4:30 pm
- One 12-hour clinical shift per week
- 4th Semester
- Monday and Thursday, 9:00 am – 2:30 pm
- One 12-hour clinical shift per week
- 1st Semester
- Clinical courses are taught at St. George Regional Hospital (St. George), Valley View Medical Center (Cedar City), and selected home care/durable medical equipment services and sleep labs in the St. George area.
- The program also affiliates with the University of Utah Hospital and Clinics; students have the opportunity to complete some of their clinical experiences at the University of Utah.
- Students are required to complete a total of 720 hours of clinicals during the 2nd, 3rd and 4th semesters.
Students taking this program of study are required to meet certain health and safety standards. The following requirements are mandatory and must be completed by deadlines given upon program admission.
- Background check
- Drug screen
- Tuberculosis (TB): Either of the following TB tests performed within the past 12 months is acceptable:
- Blood test (QuantiFERON Gold or T-SPOT.TB) with negative result
- Proof of two separate TB skin tests (administered at least 7 days apart and within 1-3 weeks of each other), both with negative result
- Hepatitis B: Proof of 3 vaccinations and a positive antibody titer (showing immunity/reactivity) demonstrated by a lab report
- MMR (measles, mumps, rubella): Proof of 2 vaccinations or a positive antibody titer (showing immunity) demonstrated by a lab report
- TDaP (tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis): Proof of 1 vaccination administered within the past 10 years
- Varicella (chicken pox): Proof of 2 vaccinations or a positive antibody titer (showing immunity) demonstrated by a lab report
- Influenza (seasonal flu): Proof of flu vaccine administered during the current flu season (September – March)
- COVID-19: Proof of a completed COVID-19 vaccine series
- Current Basic Life Support CPR & AED Training for Healthcare Professionals
- A BLS (Basic Life Support) certification course must have been completed prior to the student’s entry into the program and must be Healthcare Provider status.
- The course must have a “hands-on” component and must include AED.
- Certification must remain current for the duration of the program.
The Respiratory Therapy program complies with all Americans with Disabilities Act requirements. Utah Tech University does not discriminate on the basis of disability in admission and access to academic programs, services or employment.
In keeping with the accreditation standards outlined by CoARC, all students must possess the physical and emotional abilities required of a respiratory therapist.
Office: Taylor 255