Mar 04, 2021  
2013-2014 Catalog 
2013-2014 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Respiratory Care, AS

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Graduates of the Respiratory Care Program are prepared to become credentialed as Registered Respiratory Therapists (RRT) after successful completion of the National Board for Respiratory Care Examinations. Respiratory Therapists are members of a team of health care professionals working in a wide variety of clinical settings to evaluate, treat, and manage patients of all ages with respiratory illnesses and other cardiopulmonary disorders. As members of this team, Respiratory Therapists should exemplify the ethical and professional standards expected of all health care professionals. Respiratory therapists provide patient care which includes clinical decision‐making and patient education. The respiratory care scope of practice includes, but is not limited to the following basic competencies:

  • acquiring and evaluating clinical data
  • assessing the cardiopulmonary status of patients
  • performing and assisting in the performance of prescribed diagnostic studies such as: obtaining blood samples, blood gas analysis, pulmonary function testing, and polysomnography
  • evaluating data to assess the appropriateness of prescribed respiratory care
  • establishing therapeutic goals for patients with cardiopulmonary disease
  • participating in the development and modification of respiratory care plans
  • case management of patients with cardiopulmonary and related diseases
  • initiating prescribed respiratory care treatments, managing life support activities, evaluating and monitoring patient responses to such therapy and modifying the prescribed therapy to achieve the desired therapeutic objectives
  • initiating and conducting prescribed pulmonary rehabilitation
  • providing patient, family, and community education
  • promoting cardiopulmonary wellness, disease prevention, and disease management
  • promoting evidence‐based practice by using established clinical practice guidelines
  • evaluating published research for its relevance to patient care.

Current occupational employment and wages data for Respiratory Therapists are published by the United States Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics at

The Respiratory Care Program admits students once per year and starts each Fall semester. The curriculum includes a combination of classroom, laboratory, and clinical education experiences. General Education and Program Specific coursework may be taken on various campuses but the Respiratory Care core courses are only offered on the Lee Campus. Clinical education occurs at affiliated hospitals throughout Southwest Florida.


The Edison State College Respiratory Care program is nationally accredited by the:

The Committee on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC)

1248 Harwood Road
Bedford, TX 76021-4244

Telephone: 817-283-2835



Respiratory Care has limited enrollment due to the rigorous clinical education requirements for the program. Acceptance to Edison State College does not imply acceptance into the Respiratory Care program. Each applicant must meet specific criteria which are listed in the admission policies. The Criteria for Admission Policies are available through the program office or through the School of Health Professions office at (239)489-9255. Admission applications are located at

Admission to the program is determined by admissions points, academic transcript evaluation, and affective skills demonstration. Admissions points are awarded for the completion of General Education coursework and prospective students are encouraged to complete as many courses as possible, prior to starting the Respiratory Care Core coursework. Pre-admission requirements include satisfactory completion of the following:

  • Watson-Glaser Critical Thinking Examination
  • Panel Interview
  • College-approved criminal records check and drug testing at the applicant's expense.

After acceptance, students must complete the following:

  • Immunization and health report
  • TB Skin Test
  • Certification in American Heart Association Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers (CPR and AED) obtained during the months of June-August, prior to Fall Year 2 semester start.


Edison State College also offers a Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS) in Cardiopulmonary Sciences. Graduates of the AS Degree Program in Respiratory Care with the RRT credential may enroll in this degree program and complete remaining courses to earn the bachelor's degree. For more information, please contact the School of Health Professions (239) 489-9255.

BAS CURRICULUM SEQUENCE NOTES: Students who plan to advance to the BAS degree should consider completing the following coursework:

  • ENC 1102 English Composition II
  • STA 2023 Statistical Methods I
  • CGS 1000 or higher Computer course
  • Any Humanities Part A, writing intensive
  • WOH World History Part A, writing intensive
  • SPC 1017 or SPC 2023
  • Foreign Language Competency (8-10 semester credits in one foreign language or CLEP)
  • Science, additional elective, if needed
  • PHY 1007L, Physics for the Health Sciences Lab

General Education Coursework: 24 credit hours

Courses must be selected from those listed in the General Education Program Guide

Program Specific Coursework: 7-9 credit hours

Total Degree Program, Respiratory Care, AS: 76 Credit Hours

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