ABOUT THE CAREER:
The respiratory care practitioner is a healthcare specialist involved in the therapy, management, diagnostic evaluation, education and care of patients with deficiencies and abnormalities that affect the cardiopulmonary system. The diagnostic and therapeutic responsibilities include the administration of medical gases, aerosols, environmental control systems, life-sustaining mechanical ventilation, medications, chest physical therapy, and specialized cardiopulmonary procedures. The respiratory care practitioner works closely with the physician in assessing the patient and planning the proper respiratory care protocol.
Currently, there are more than 150,000 respiratory care practitioners in the United States. They are a vital part of a hospital's lifesaving response team that answers patient emergencies. An increasing number of practitioners have branched out into alternate care settings such as nursing homes, physicians' offices, home health agencies, specialized care hospitals, medical equipment supply companies, and patients' homes.
The outlook for respiratory care professionals is expected to grow in the coming years due to the large increase in the elderly population, the impact of environmental problems that have contributed to breathing problems, and technological advances that are prolonging the lives of those suffering from heart attack, cancer and accidents, as well as premature babies.
A COMPREHENSIVE PROGRAM:
The two-year Respiratory Care program is designed to prepare the student for employment and to participate as a member of the healthcare team by providing direct patient care. Experience in respiratory care is provided in selected local hospitals where the student has learning experiences that are supervised by the American River College faculty. The program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Programs through the Committee on Accreditation for Respiratory Care. Further information regarding the respiratory care profession is available at the Respiratory Care program website http://web. arc.losrios.edu/edhealth/respcare.html.
Once accepted to the Respiratory Care program, in addition to college enrollment fees students will be responsible for the following program costs:
- Books and supplies
- Physical and required immunizations
- Drug screening test
- Current CPR certification
- Malpractice insurance, and
- Background check (required by clinical facilities)
The student is also responsible for providing laboratory coats, transportation to off-campus facilities and the fee for standardized national testing.
APPLICATION AND ENROLLMENT:
The Respiratory Care program admits students once a year beginning in January. Applications for the spring semester are available the first week of September, and can be obtained from the Health and Education Division office in Room 770, or the Respiratory Care website http://web.arc.losrios.edu/ edhealth/respcare.html. Always check the website for the latest application information.
Students who meet the educational pre-enrollment requirements and follow the pre-enrollment procedures will be considered for the program. Meeting all these requirements does not guarantee enrollment in the program. Class size will be limited. If the application pool is greater than the program can accept, students are chosen based on a computerized random selection process from among the qualified candidates.
DEGREE AND LICENSURE:
Successful completion of the Respiratory Care program qualifies the graduate for an Associate in Science degree and eligibility to apply for: (1) the examination for the respiratory care practitioner license issued by the California Respiratory Care Board, and (2) the national registry examination for advanced practitioner (registered respiratory therapist) which is administered by the National Board for Respiratory Care.
WHY AMERICAN RIVER COLLEGE?:
American River College (ARC) is part of the Los Rios Community College District. ARC opened its doors as California's 61st public junior college in 1955. At more than 38,000 students, American River College is among the largest community colleges in the state, and is looked upon as a leader in innovative programs and services. It transfers more students to UC Davis and CSU Sacramento than any other community college. ARC has a complete department of skilled career counselors to help students succeed in college. They are available to provide information about admissions and degree requirements, financial aid opportunities and student services, including tutoring assistance.
To obtain additional information about educational programs in healthcare or the requirements to attend American River College, visit www.arc.losrios.edu or call the Health Education Office at 916.484.8902. Compliance Statement/Nondiscrimination American River College - in compliance with Title VI & VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the 1972 Education Amendment and Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act - does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, national origin, sex, age, mental or physical handicaps in any of its policies, programs or activities, including admissions, employment, financial aid and educational services.