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What Skills Does a Competent Respiratory Therapist Need?

Respiratory Therapist

April 5 2020 - The respiratory therapist job outlook is expected to grow at a rate of 21%.

This rate is much higher than most other jobs! In fact, the medical field, in general, seems to have a high growth rate when compared to other fields.

If you have a passion for helping others, a respiratory therapist may be the perfect job for you! Keep in mind, there are some requirements for this job position. There's a specific education plan and set of skills required for respiratory therapy.

Keep reading to learn about the necessary respiratory therapist skills.

What Does a Competent Respiratory Therapist Do?

A respiratory therapists' job is to care for patients who are having difficulty breathing.

The conditions that a respiratory therapist treats can be as mild as asthma, or as severe as chronic respiratory disease.  Respiratory therapists also provide emergency care in the case of a heart attack or trauma.

What Skills Does a Competent Respiratory Therapist Need?

Respiratory therapists are vital for treating respiratory conditions, especially for the elderly.

In addition to completing respiratory therapy school, a respiratory therapist should possess a specific skill set.

These skills are essential for a competent respiratory therapist.

Ability to Work in a Team

respiratory therapist needs to be able to work well with others.

A respiratory therapist collaborates with other doctors, nurses, and medical staff on a daily basis. The therapist works with the staff to ensure that everyone is on the same page when it comes to the patient's condition.

Patience and Compassion

Like most medical professions, a respiratory therapist must have compassion and patience.

Many of the patients that a respiratory therapist works with are elderly people who need a bit more guidance. They may need more direction as they are shown how to use breathing treatments and testing.

A respiratory therapist must also show compassion and patience for the family of those they are treating.

Attention to Detail

While the therapist must treat the patient, they must also record the progress and treatment plan.

This involves having an eye for detail. Missing a number, recording the symptoms incorrectly, or forgetting to document information can negatively impact the patient's plan. A respiratory therapist must pay close attention to the symptoms of the patient as well as the information recorded.


Respiratory therapists do quite a bit of communicating in their jobs.

Not only does the therapist have to communicate with the other medical staff, but they must communicate with patients. Knowing which questions to ask, how to ask them politely, and making the patient feel at ease are communicative skills a respiratory therapist should possess.

Is A Respiratory Therapist the Right Job for You?

It takes a special person to spend their days caring for others.

Respiratory therapists play such a huge role in the lives of those who experience breathing problems. If you have the skills listed above and dream of working in the medical field, consider becoming a respiratory therapist!

If you loved this post, check out our other content on human resources.

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