Respiratory therapists provide care for patients who have trouble breathing and have been invaluable in helping patients with chronic respiratory diseases like COVID-19. Respiratory Therapists also care for patients with asthma or emphysema and provide emergency care to patients suffering from heart attacks, drowning, or shock.
Cardiopulmonary and respiratory healthcare professionals are in demand around the country, and Fusion Marketplace offers employment for travel respiratory therapy jobs in every kind of facility and location. Here, you have the freedom to compare perks and benefits offered by staffing agencies in one place - including pay packages, 401k plans, medical, and dental insurance. So create a profile and find your next job today!
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The salary of a respiratory therapist can vary significantly depending on the experience and education as well as the location, facility, and type of shift worked. The median salary for a respiratory therapist was $91,680 in 2020 with most earning between $75,360 and $106,060 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Entry-level respiratory therapists or those with the lowest 10% salary earned around $63,530, while the highest 10% earned more than $126,780. Typically, travel respiratory therapist opportunities will provide higher hourly and weekly pay than permanent positions in the same location, though this varies widely by assignment.
Certified Respiratory Therapists will typically make less than a Registered Respiratory Therapist because they hold an entry-level certification while RRTs hold a more advanced certification. According to Salary.com, Certified Respiratory Therapist jobs pay an average salary of $65,577 with most jobs paying between $58,412 and $71,747. The median salary for a Registered Respiratory Therapist position in the United States is over 7% higher at $70,445, with most jobs paying between $64,013 and $76,588.
California pays the highest average salary according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics with an average annual wage of $87.190 and an hourly wage of $41.92. This is followed by the District of Columbia ($82,940 per year, $39.88 per hour), New York ($79,840 per year, $38.39 per hour), Hawaii ($77,930 per year, $37.47 per hour), and Nevada ($77,380 per year, $37.20 per hour).
One thing to keep in mind as a travel respiratory therapist is that seeking the highest paying contract does not always mean that you will get paid the most when factoring in the cost of living of each state. When comparing adjusted respiratory therapy salaries, Nevada, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Washington State, and Kansas make up the top five highest paying states.
Respiratory therapists work alongside doctors and nurses as vital members of the healthcare team. Respiratory Therapists specialize in providing care for the lungs and possess advanced knowledge in the anatomy and function of the respiratory system. The goal of a respiratory therapist is to ensure that a patient’s breathing functions are operating at the highest levels of performance. A respiratory therapist cares for patients suffering from chronic respiratory diseases, such as asthma, cystic fibrosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and emphysema. They also help treat diseases, infections, or viruses of the cardiopulmonary system, such as lung cancer, bronchitis, pneumonia, and COVID-19. Respiratory Therapists also provide life-saving care to patients suffering from heart attacks, stroke, drowning, shock, or other trauma.
The job duties of a respiratory therapist will vary depending on the level of supervision, type of healthcare facility, and the respiratory care services provided by the facility they work for. However, their primary responsibilities will always involve the diagnosis and treatment of breathing disorders.
To travel as a respiratory therapist, you must complete a respiratory therapy education program at the associate’s or bachelor’s level that is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC). Those pursuing immediate entry into the field can complete an associate degree that includes two full academic years of study and clinical experience. A Bachelor's degree can is typically a four-year program that provides a more in-depth study in respiratory care techniques and additional clinical experiences. There are few offerings for a master's degree in respiratory therapy as it is not required to become a respiratory therapist.
The National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC) is the only accredited credentialing body for respiratory care. The NBRC administers the Therapist Multiple-Choice (TMC) Examination for those who meet the requirements to test. The examination offers two cut scores that determine whether the candidate will receive credentials as a Certified Respiratory Therapist or Registered Respiratory Therapist (provided the candidate is eligible for the RRT exam based on education requirements).
It is important to ensure your credentials are correct before applying for a respiratory therapist travel job. Creating a profile with Fusion Marketplace is one effortless way to store and share employment history, education & certification, licenses, references, and any other professional documents. Fusion Marketplace also offers multiple agencies specializing in allied health travel, and the recruiters are available to provide support at every stage of your travel career.
The CRT certification is a measure of essential knowledge, skills, and abilities required of respiratory therapists at entry into practice. The candidate must be a graduate of at least a two-year degree program supported or accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC) CoARC and have achieved a low-cut score on the TMC to earn the CRT credential. The TMC education requirement may make them ineligible for the next level of the TMC exam.
The RRT certification recognizes the individual as having advanced clinical skills, advanced decision-making skills, and further training to act in a consulting role in matters concerning patient care planning and treatment. The candidate must be a graduate of a two-year or a four-year degree program accredited by CoARC, have achieved the high cut score on the TMC, and passed the Clinical Simulation Examination (CSE) portion of the exam to earn the Registered Respiratory Therapist credential. For these reasons, the RRT credential is generally preferred by most employers.
Travel Respiratory Therapist assignments are available all across the country in a variety of healthcare settings. Travel respiratory therapy jobs provide the opportunity for an RRT or CRT to explore different parts of the country, gain valuable career experience, and work with a wide variety of patients and facilities. Most respiratory therapists work in acute-care hospital settings, including critical access, community, teaching, surgical, long-term acute care (LTACH), and rehab hospitals. Within the hospitals, respiratory therapists can be found in the emergency room, the intensive care unit, medical-surgical units, the newborn or pediatric intensive care unit, or the pulmonary diagnostics laboratory, among others. They work with patients of all ages, from premature infants with underdeveloped lungs to senior citizens with advanced chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Traveling as an Allied Health practitioner provides a number of personal and career benefits. Travel respiratory therapist assignments provide competitive pay packages, as they are needed all across the country. Respiratory therapy positions are expected to grow by 23% by 2030 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), respiratory therapists will be in demand for years to come. This demand allows travel respiratory therapists more flexible career options.
Create a Fusion Medical staffing profile and start your search knowing that as a Respiratory Therapist, you have the benefit of flexible career options. Find the assignment with the ideal shift, start date, hours, and location you are looking for. Allied health agencies also may also provide insurance benefits, travel reimbursement, housing stipends, reimbursement for licenses, and other perks depending on the contract.