Respiratory Therapist Technician

Assist patients with their lung treatments.
picture of Respiratory Therapist Technician

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$30,000 – $66,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Respiratory Therapist Technicians do?

Breathing silently is key to winning a game of hide-and-seek. For people with lung problems, winning is almost impossible. The whistles, crackles, and wheezes that their lungs make give away their hiding spot time and time again.

These breathing problems can do more than ruin an afternoon of games, however. In fact, they can be life threatening. A Respiratory Therapist Technician works under the direction of a Doctor to prevent those breathing problems from progressing.

When patients arrive for their appointments, Respiratory Therapist Technicians provide the first medical evaluation. As a Respiratory Therapist Technician, you measure their weight, blood pressure, and temperature. Using specialized tools, you determine how much air they can pull in and push out, and you may also measure how much oxygen and carbon dioxide is in each breath.

After your examination, you write down all of your notes for the Doctor. You don’t make any diagnoses. Instead, you rely on the Doctor to do that.

Once the Doctor completes another examination, the patient may have a long list of medications and therapies to use at home. You step back into the room and help the patient understand all of those treatments. Some patients need to perform strange lung exercises, and you demonstrate how to do them properly. Others need to remain strapped to oxygen tanks, and you ensure that those tanks are calibrated properly.

Most Doctors have Receptionists who make appointments and handle paperwork. From time to time, if the Receptionist is away, you may be asked to fill in and handle these tasks on a short-term basis.


Should I be a Respiratory Therapist Technician?

You should have an associate's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Calm Under Pressure: You keep your cool when dealing with highly stressful situations.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.

  • Also known as: Registered Respiratory Therapist, Registered Respiratory Therapist Technician, Respiratory Therapist Assistant

    How to Become a
    Respiratory Therapist Technician

    Most Respiratory Therapist Technicians have an Associate's degree. Chart?chd=s:av9jaa&chl=|certificate+%2840%25%29|associate%27s+%2852%25%29|bachelor%27s+%288%25%29||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,52
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