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Becoming a Respiratory Therapist in Nebraska

If you are interested in becoming a respiratory therapist in Nebraska, then there are several steps you have to take. The average salary for a respiratory therapist in Nebraska is $55,000 a year. The need for respiratory therapists is constantly growing in this state as the population ages. People in this profession have stability and the knowledge that there are many open positions at all times. Respiratory therapists provide crucial help to people suffering from different cardiopulmonary conditions. They focus on helping patients breathe better.

Meeting the Requirements

The first step to becoming a respiratory therapist in Nebraska is to meet the education requirements. Since Nebraska requires all respiratory therapists to have a degree and license, you must enroll in an educational program to joint this career. There are a variety of online, technical, vocational and traditional schools that offer degrees in respiratory therapy. You can find programs that meet any of your needs including part-time, full-time and classes for adults returning to school.

Most programs require a high school education and a diploma. They will also look at your SAT and ACT scores. Each school will have different standards for grades and test scores that must be met to be admitted into the respiratory therapy degree program. Although most programs encourage taking classes in math and science before applying, they are usually not a requirement. Some respiratory therapy programs are more difficult and force potential students to take admission tests along with interviews. Becoming a respiratory therapist in Nebraska may seem difficult at times, but it is worth the struggles.

Degrees for Respiratory Therapists

Most respiratory therapists have associate's degrees. Nebraska has specific guidelines for which schools are on their approved and accredited lists, so you will want to check this updated list before applying and becoming a respiratory therapist. An associate's degree in respiratory therapy usually takes two years to earn. You can find accelerated degree programs that offer you the ability to start working in this field after one year.

In addition to earning an associate's degree, many students choose to pursue more education. Bachelor's, master's or PhD degrees are all possible options that require more years to earn. A higher degree often brings a bigger salary and more responsibilities. However, respiratory therapists can enjoy a great salary and benefits even at the associate's degree level.

Learning and Training

One of the most important parts of becoming a respiratory therapist in Nebraska is to receive the right training for the profession. Most of the degree programs offer you the chance to learn and train at the same time. You will have the opportunity to attend classes and receive hands on experience in real medical settings. After a period of time spent in the classroom, most programs have training available in healthcare settings like hospitals or private practices. Students enjoy the benefit of working with real patients and learning more about respiratory therapy.

Everyone begins the process of becoming a respiratory therapist in Nebraska by taking basic courses like biology, chemistry, physics, pharmacology, biochemistry, microbiology and mathematics. After students receive a good understanding of these subjects, anatomy and physiology is usually added. The next step is to learn about respiratory functions, diseases, tests and treatments. The focus shifts to cardiopulmonary conditions and how to treat patients with various disorders. Students often receive training in real medical facilities with real patients and help doctors treat them.

After graduating with a degree from an accredited program, this state requires another step for a person who is respiratory therapist in Nebraska. You must take the National Board exam and receive a license to be a respiratory therapist.