Things I Hate About Respiratory Care
I'd like to take the time to name the top four things I hate about respiratory therapy.
First, I hate the lack of respect we get. If I recall my ABCs of emergency support, the airway is always first. I cannot count how many times I have had treatments or patient instructions interrupted by nurses or just had to fight to get to "the head" during a code while some other relatively meaningless thing was going on. It's as if we only exist when it is convenient, when there's something that needs to be done that the nurses don't want to do, or when no one else knows what to try next.
Second, I hate evening shifts. Mine are from 10 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. They don't start late enough to really "sleep in," but they are early enough to mess up my morning. They end late enough so that nothing in my sleepy little town is open when I finally get off from work. Plus, I miss all the good football games.
Third, I don't like having credentials the NBRC doesn't recognize. I worked hard to get my AE-C (Certified Asthma Educator). One might think that having a specialty in asthma would be a worthwhile goal for an RT, but apparently it isn't. Now, we are looking at credentials for being a COPD educator. I would imagine the NBRC will think that is unimportant, too.
Last, I hate, no, I loathe, always being stuck in a broom closet at the longest possible distance from the patients. Seems like every hospital I have worked in for almost 30 years has placed RT as far away from our two main areas: the ED and the ICU. Who thinks this is a good idea? Put me where the action is. Or, at least, where it will be when you want me there quickly. Also, what goofball believes we don't have larger equipment than anyone else in the hospital? Give me room for my ventilator, my bilevels, and all my other equipment so I can store it neatly in some logical order.
Readers, what do you hate about respiratory care?
Jim Thacker, BS, CRT, AE-C