Uzer Kahn, MD, Medical Director
The bachelor of science degree program in respiratory care prepares the graduate for a career as a registered respiratory care practitioner. Respiratory care practitioners evaluate, treat, and care for people with breathing problems. They assist physicians in the evaluation and treatment of heart and lung disorders. Respiratory care practitioners are experts in the therapeutic use of medical gases, oxygen administration, pulmonary resuscitation, and artificial airways. They are employed in hospitals, extended care facilities, clinics, rehabilitation centers, physicians’ offices, educational programs, home care services, as well as, national and international medical device companies.
The program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC). The program consists of two academic years of pre-clinical studies (65 credits) on the Indiana campus and two academic years (59 credits) of clinical study at the IUP Pittsburgh East. Students are expected to earn a GPA of at least 2.25 in the required Natural Sciences and Mathematics courses (includes “C” or higher in BIOL 150 and BIOL 240), and an overall GPA of at least 2.0 to be considered for Fall semester admission into the clinical years in respiratory care. However, since admission to the clinical years is competitive, IUP cannot guarantee progression.
Respiratory Care majors must earn a minimum grade of “C” in all required RESP 300 level and 400 level courses to progress. A grade of “D” in a RESP course may hinder progression to the next level of required courses when mastery of the content is essential for success and certification.
Upon graduation, graduates are eligible for certification (CRT) and registration (RRT) in respiratory care. The granting of the degree is not contingent upon passing the credential examinations. Graduates are prepared for graduate degrees that may lead to careers in administration, education, and medicine.
This program is also available to Certified Respiratory Therapists (CRTs) who are graduates of a USDE-accredited, Associate degree respiratory care program. Based upon successful completion and prior approval to transfer academic credits from another respiratory care program, CRT students may be exempt from the RESP 100 and 300 level courses (29 credits). Students who are A.S., CRT must complete 27 credits from the 400 level RESP courses (see list below), which are available on a full-time or part-time basis. There is potential for additional course exemptions that meet prior approval for transfer (liberal studies, math, science); several of these courses may be available online. CRT candidates must provide proof of a valid NBRC credential and a current respiratory license for the state of Pennsylvania.
Detailed information regarding requirements such as health screening, liability insurance, legal clearance, and professional uniforms is available in the Nursing and Allied Health Department office and on the IUP website.
Criteria for change of major and applications are available online through the IUP Department of Nursing and Allied Health Professions.