This week is National Respiratory Care Week, and students at Weatherford College will observe the annual event sponsored by the American Association for Respiratory Care (AARC), which focuses on the work of respiratory therapists (RTs) and the importance of lung health.
“People who are lucky enough to take breathing for granted may never have heard of a ‘respiratory therapist,’” said Christel Brenner, WC respiratory clinical coordinator in a college press release. “But for those with asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis and other conditions, ‘RTs,’ as they are known for short, are the key to breathing easier.
“National Respiratory Care Week is a great time for everyone to learn more about these vital health care professionals.”
Respiratory therapists work in hospitals, long-term care facilities, home care settings and doctors’ offices to assist physicians in caring for their patients with pulmonary problems. They manage ventilators in the intensive care unit, perform the pulmonary function tests that are used to diagnose lung disease, and deliver respiratory care throughout hospitals and in the emergency department.
RTs also spend time educating chronic lung disease patients about their conditions and the medications used to treat them so they will be better able to stay at home and out of the hospital, and they work in pulmonary rehabilitation programs to help people regain some of their lost functioning.
The Respiratory Care Club second-year students will host an information table 8 a.m. to noon in the Doss Center lobby on the main campus in Weatherford to celebrate National Respiratory Care Week.
“We would like to invite everyone to come by and learn about respiratory therapy and lung disease,” said Brenner.