Dameron's Respiratory Care Practitioners (RCPs) work under the direction of physicians to diagnose, treat, and manage care for patients with cardiopulmonary problems. The scope of their practice ranges from delivering temporary relief to persons with asthma, pulmonary edema, or emphysema, to providing emergency treatment for asphyxiation, heart failure, stroke, sepsis, drowning, or shock.
Next to our nurses, RCPs are the most frequently seen health care providers at the patient bedside. In addition, RCPs are present in the emergency room for resuscitation and are always a member of response teams that rush to the side of a patient who experiences sudden cardiac arrest.
What can RCPs treat patients for?
RCPs perform a number of diagnostic, treatment, and life support procedures including:
- Administering life support
- Mechanical ventilation for individuals who cannot breathe independently
- Administering medications in aerosol form
- Monitoring patient response to therapy
- Obtaining blood specimens to analyze levels of oxygen and carbon dioxide
- Maintaining a tracheostomy or intubation tube; inserting artificial airways
- Measuring lung capacity and air exchange
- Obtaining sputum specimens and chest x-rays
- Interpreting test data
- Assessing indicators of respiratory dysfunction
- Conducting chronic respiratory disease management and smoking cessation programs