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Career and Education Opportunities for Respiratory Therapists in McKinney, Texas

Respiratory therapists can find many career and educational opportunities in the McKinney, Texas area. About 7,420 people are currently employed as respiratory therapists in Texas. By 2016, this is expected to grow by 37% to 10,200 people employed. This is better than the national trend for respiratory therapists, which sees this job pool growing by about 20.9% over the next eight years. Respiratory therapists generally assess, treat, and care for patients with breathing disorders.

The income of a respiratory therapist is about $23 per hour or $49,040 per year on average in Texas. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $25 hourly or $52,200 annually on average. Compared with people working in the overall category of Alternative and Specialized, people working as respiratory therapists in Texas earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Alternative and Specialized nationally. Jobs in this field include: respiratory therapy director, sleep lab technician, and clinical coordinator of respiratory therapy.

There are fifteen schools of higher education in the McKinney area, including one within twenty-five miles of McKinney where you can get a degree to start your career as a respiratory therapist. Respiratory therapists usually hold an Associate's, or other 2-year degree, so you can expect to spend about two years training to become a respiratory therapist if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Respiratory Therapist

Respiratory Therapist video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, respiratory therapists assess, treat, and care for patients with breathing disorders. They also assume primary responsibility for all respiratory care modalities, including the supervision of respiratory therapy technicians.

Respiratory therapists read prescriptions, measure arterial blood gases, and review patient data to gauge patient condition. They also prepare and operate devices such as mechanical ventilators, therapeutic gas administration apparatus, environmental control systems, and aerosol generators, following specified parameters of treatment. Equally important, respiratory therapists have to inspect, clean, test and maintain respiratory therapy apparatus to insure equipment is functioning safely and efficiently, ordering repairs when needed. They are often called upon to work as part of a team of physicians and other health care professionals to manage patient care by assisting with medical procedures and related duties. They are expected to monitor patients' physiological responses to therapy, such as vital signs, arterial blood gases, and blood chemistry changes, and confer with physicians if adverse reactions occur. Finally, respiratory therapists conduct tests, such as electrocardiograms (EKGs), stress testing, and lung capacity tests, to review patients' cardiopulmonary functions.

Every day, respiratory therapists are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they evaluate problems as they arise.

It is important for respiratory therapists to make emergency visits to deal with apparatus problems. They are often called upon to teach and utilize the assistance of students, respiratory therapy technicians, and assistants. They also perform pulmonary function and adjust apparatus to obtain optimum results in therapy. Somewhat less frequently, respiratory therapists are also expected to read prescriptions, measure arterial blood gases, and review patient data to gauge patient condition.

And finally, they sometimes have to explain treatment procedures to patients to get cooperation and allay fears.

Like many other jobs, respiratory therapists must have a strong concern for others and have exceptional integrity.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in McKinney include:

  • Audiologist. Assess and treat persons with hearing and related disorders. May fit hearing aids and provide auditory training. May perform research related to hearing problems.
  • Dental Hygienist. Clean teeth and examine oral areas, head, and neck for signs of oral disease. May educate patients on oral hygiene, take and develop X-rays, or apply fluoride or sealants.
  • Licensed Practical Nurse. Care for ill, injured, or disabled persons in hospitals, nursing homes, and similar institutions. May work under the supervision of a registered nurse. Licensing required.
  • Speech and Language Teacher. Assess and treat persons with speech, language, and fluency disorders. May select alternative communication systems and teach their use. May perform research related to speech and language problems.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Respiratory Therapist Training

Collin County Community College District - Plano, TX

Collin County Community College District, 4800 Preston Park Blvd., Plano, TX 75093. Collin County Community College District is a large college located in Plano, Texas. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 21,000 students. Collin County Community College District has an associate's degree program in Respiratory Care Therapy/Therapist which graduated seventeen students in 2008.



Licensing agency: Respiratory Care Program
Address: Texas Department of Health, 1100 West 49th Street, Austin, TX 78765-3183

Phone: (512) 834-6632
Website: Respiratory Care Program Texas Department of Health


McKinney, Texas
McKinney, Texas photo by Agriffin

Mckinney is situated in Collin County, Texas. It has a population of over 121,211, which has grown by 122.9% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Mckinney, 90, is below the national average. New single-family homes in Mckinney are valued at $168,500 on average, which is below the state average. In 2008, nine hundred eighty-seven new homes were built in Mckinney, down from 1,662 the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Mckinney are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, computer and electronic products, and professional, scientific, and technical services. The average commute to work is about 27 minutes. More than 39.1% of Mckinney residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.3%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Mckinney is 7.8%, which is less than Texas's average of 8.1%.

The percentage of Mckinney residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 53.7%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Redeemer Presbyterian Church, Eternity Community Church and Church of Christ are some of the churches located in Mckinney. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention and the United Methodist Church.

Mckinney is home to the Estes House and the A M Scott House as well as Mouzon Park and Murphy Park.