Respiratory therapists – helping us breathe easier
Respiratory therapists (RTs) are playing a vital role in the COVID-19 response of health systems around the world, including right here in Manitoba, using their specialized training in the assessment, management and treatment of patients experiencing breathing or cardiopulmonary disorders on the front lines of our province’s pandemic response.
RTs provide essential care to patients of all ages who are having trouble breathing for a variety of reasons, including chronic respiratory disease, asthma, emphysema, and yes, COVID-19. They are highly trained and skilled health professionals working in home and community care, long-term care, and across acute care facilities in ORs, ICUs and other clinical settings.
Staying at the forefront of research and technology, RTs bring leading practices and evidence-based therapy to the bedside and to the stretcher, also delivering resuscitation and stabilization to critically ill or injured patients both in facility and during transport.
“This year, more than ever, our health care system is relying on the specialized skills of respiratory therapists. They are on the frontlines tirelessly providing care to those infected by COVID-19 and many other illnesses,” said Helen Clark, Chief Operating Officer for Emergency Response Services and Chief Allied Health Officer. “The nature of their role and the care they provide means they are integral members of the health team providing care to critically ill patients while also being involved in the design of innovative ventilator equipment and updated protocols to keep their patients, themselves and their colleagues safe.”
“On top of all that, they have continued to provide essential care to a wide range of other patients across our health care system who need their specialized care,” added Clark.
This year, during Respiratory Therapist Week, Shared Health recognizes the continued diligence and professionalism of our province’s RTs and we thank them for their important contribution to the well-being of our patients, today and every day.