Please visit CDC.gov for the latest information regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19).
Respiratory Therapists have always been vital members of the healthcare team. This is especially true now more than ever as we try to combat the spread of the coronavirus.
In this article, we’re going to highlight the role of a Respiratory Therapist when it comes to treating patients who have tested positive for COVID-19.
Medical Disclaimer: While this is a Respiratory Therapy website, we are not experts when it comes to the details of COVID-19. Even though Respiratory Therapists are on the front lines when it comes to treating patients who are infected, we are not doctors or scientists, nor are we experts when it comes to controlling infectious diseases. Again, please visit the CDC Website for the latest information regarding COVID-19.
The research for this article was done using the following trusted resources:
For the remainder of this article, we will specifically focus on the role of the Respiratory Therapist.
Respiratory Therapists are Trained to Treat Patients With Cardiopulmonary Disorders
This, of course, includes patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 as it is a disease that affects the respiratory system.
Respiratory Therapists are Trained to Operate Mechanical Ventilators
Respiratory Therapists can initiate and manage patients who are in need of breathing support from a mechanical ventilator.
Mechanical Ventilation is a form of life support that is used to assist with spontaneous breathing. In most cases, patients who are in need of ventilatory support are considered to be in critical condition. Respiratory Therapists are trained to operate mechanical ventilators and make changes to the settings when it’s necessary depending on each individual patient’s condition.
And this is also where the role of the Respiratory Therapist comes into play as well because they are needed to manage these machines and provide care for the patients who are infected.
Is There a Shortage of Respiratory Therapists?
According to the AARC, there are approximately 150,000 Respiratory Therapists in the United States. Since the COVID-19 outbreak started, as I’m sure you can imagine, the need for more Respiratory Therapists continues to grow.
It has yet to be determined if there is a shortage of Respiratory Therapists or not. I just know that Respiratory Therapists, as well as other healthcare workers, are vitally important when it comes to treating patients who have tested positive for the coronavirus.
At the time of this writing, many Respiratory Therapists are required to work overtime hours and pick up extra shifts. For that, personally, I just want to say thank you for your service, commitment, and dedication to helping us get through the pandemic.
Where Can You Learn More About COVID-19?
Again, the CDC is the trusted source for all the latest information about the coronavirus. In fact, real quick, let’s talk about how you can protect yourself and those around you.
Self-Quarantine and Practice Social Distancing
At the time of this writing, the COVID-19 virus is spreading rapidly throughout all areas of the United States.
Wash Your Hands Often
Do the Five
And according to the World Health Organization, we should all “Do the Five.” In other words, try to do these five things in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19:
- Hands – Again, wash your hands often.
- Elbow – Cough into your elbow and cover your mouth when coughing or sneezing. Use a tissue if possible and dispose of in when finished. Otherwise, you can cough or sneeze into the inside of your arm or elbow.
- Face – Don’t touch it. Keep your hands away from your mouth, nose, and eyes.
- Space – Keep a safe distance. If you must be around other people, try to keep as much distance between you and them as possible.
- Home – Stay at home as much as possible. Especially if you’re sick or showing flu-like symptoms. Try to stay at home except if you must leave to seek medical care.
A Message from the Respiratory Therapy Zone Team:
Our hearts go out to all of those who have been affected by COVID-19. You will continue to stay in our thoughts and prayers as we all navigate our way through this pandemic.
We hope you stay safe and most importantly, thank you for your dedication and willingness to put yourself before others. Words cannot express how much your service is appreciated during this time.
So there you have it. Now you understand just how important Respiratory Therapists are when it comes to fighting the coronavirus. This is especially true now more than ever.
Again, research concerning COVID-19 is always changing and evolving. Because of this, be sure to visit the CDC Website for the latest information.
Thank you so much for reading. Stay safe, and as always, breathe easy my friend.
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