Respiratory Practitioner or Therapist – Job Description

These are specialized medical practitioners that are usually stationed in outpatient facilities. They focus on diagnosing, treating, and evaluating patients with respiratory and lungs problems. They are usually needed the most intensive care unit and operating room.

There are different fields of respiratory management. These practitioners usually chose one of these fields to advance their education and expertise.

These specialties are:

– Sleep Disorders
– Pediatrics
– Post Surgery
– Cardiovascular
– Pulmonary
– Intensive Care
Emergency Care
Pre Hospital Care
– Air Transport
– Cystic Fibrosis
– Asthma
– Case Management
– Extra corporeal membrane oxygenation

These nurses work under the supervision of nurse practitioners and doctors, They take instructions from them and work according to the treatment plan that the nurse practitioner creates.

Respiratory practitioners help mange the airways of a patient when he or she has trouble breathing. These practitioners might administer gases, anesthesia, and other medication to help improve or stabilize the function of the respiratory system. They  usually do this during operations and intensive care.

Respiratory practitioners work with a number of different patients, as mentioned earlier. They work with patients in the adult intensive care unit, pediatric ICU, neonatal ICU, surgical ICU, emergency rooms, life support units, and many other parts of a medical facility.

They can also work in different types of medical care facilities. There can consist of regular hospitals, emergency care facilities, air crafts, nursing homes, and many more. Respiratory practitioners can also start and manage the life support for people in the emergency room or intensive care unit.

They also help patients that are suffering from different types of disorders or ailments. This can be physical trauma, breathing disorders, heart issues, and sleep disorders.  They are educators at asthma and cardiovascular clinics.

These nurses can also be seen working on ambulances and other pre-hospital transport methods.  They can also manage a lot of the pre hospital process as well. Especially, if the patient has respiratory issues.

Respiratory practitioners can also be teaching classes at local community colleges, technical schools, or other medical care facilities. They provide great information that is backed great education and first hand experience.


Many respiratory practitioners contain a BSN or a higher degree of education.  However, the minimum degree for a respiratory practitioners is the same for a registered nurse. That is an associate’s degree in nursing (ADN). More specially, an associate of science in respiratory care.

Then the licensing and certification exams needs to taken. These assessments are administered by the individual state licensing board and National Board Of Respiratory Care (non profit organization that regulates the certifications and licensing of the practitioners). These are the two governing bodies in the United States.

See also Sbar nursing