Respiratory Therapists deserve to be classified as Healthcare Caregivers

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Respiratory Therapists are often the unsung heroes of medicine. Most of the general public doesn't even know that we exist . We were hoping that would change during a respiratory pandemic. Sadly, it has not.

When a patient in the hospital is deteriorating Nurses and Doctors alike scream, "Where is Respiratory?" Respiratory Therapists are screaming that now. When healthcare workers are mentioned, it's always Doctors and Nurses. The much needed ventilators are even mentioned but rarely the skilled professionals that manage them. Respiratory Therapists are very crucial  as we intubate the patients,manage the vents and breathe for these patients during code blues. Because of this care, we are at high risk for exposure. We do this willingly because if the patient isn't breathing then little else matters.

The federal government doesn't  list us as caregivers or providers along with Doctors, Nurses or other Therapists. We're listed as Hospital personnel and even then, we're last like we were thrown in as an afterthought. This affects our being able to qualify for healthcare caregiver loans and grants. This also affects morale.

None of us went into medicine for glory or fame but I would be less than honest if I said that this slight isn't hurtful.  By signing this petition  you may be helping Respiratory Therapists get the classification and recognition that we have rightfully earned and deserve.   Please consider reaching out to your elected officials as well. 

Thank you!