Respiratory Therapist Salary

The average Respiratory Therapist in the United States earns approximately $24.36 per hour. Earnings sit near $18.63 per hour on the lower side but can approach $32.79 on the higher side. The most important factor affecting compensation for this group is geography, followed by career duration and the individual firm. Work is enjoyable for Respiratory Therapists, who typically claim high levels of job satisfaction. The majority of Respiratory Therapists (62 percent) who took the survey are female. A fair number enjoy medical while the larger part get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to a majority.

$34,387 - $68,732

Add this chart to your site: 640px    300px

$18.63 - $32.79

Add this chart to your site: 640px    300px

National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$24K$48K$72K
Salary
$34,387 - $68,732  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,463  
Profit Sharing
$152.05 - $4,530  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$38,393 - $70,670  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 609
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$17$34$51
Hourly Rate
$18.63 - $32.79  
   
Overtime
$21.06 - $49.08  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,463  
   
Profit Sharing
$152.05 - $4,530  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$38,393 - $70,670  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 2,540
United States (change)

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)


Comp Managers: Start Here »

Job Description for Respiratory Therapist

Respiratory therapists, or RTs, work with people who are experiencing issues with breathing and, often, cardiopulmonary issues. In many cases, their patients include premature infants born without fully developed lungs, as well as children and adults who suffer from problems such as cystic fibrosis, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Generally, a respiratory therapist meets with a patient and examines them; after discussing the results of the exam with a physician, they then put together a plan of treatment for the patient. Often, the plan involves removing mucous from a patient’s lungs, as well as inserting a ventilation tube down the patient’s throat in order to connect it to an oxygen-delivering machine. Respiratory therapists working in emergency rooms also often provide care to heart attack, drowning, and shock victims. Respiratory therapists working in home health care often set up ventilators and other life-supporting equipment, as well as providing care takers with direction on the equipment’s use.

Read More...

Respiratory Therapist Tasks

  • Maintain patient charts with therapy information.
  • Inspect, clean, and test respiratory therapy equipment.
  • Monitor patient's physiological responses to therapy; vital signs, arterial blood gases and blood chemistry changes and consult with physician if adverse reactions occur.
  • Determine requirements for treatment; type, method and duration of therapy based on physicians' orders.
  • Set up and operate mechanical and therapeutic devices following specified parameters of treatment.

Common Career Paths for Respiratory Therapist


Add this chart to your site:   640px 640px    300px 300px


Respiratory Therapists who transition into a Physician Assistant role may receive large pay increases as the latter position pays an average $82K per year. The most common next step for a Respiratory Therapist is to become a Respiratory Therapy Manager or a Registered Nurse. The former position pays an additional $11K per year on average, and the latter position pays $4K more per year.

Respiratory Therapist Job Listings

Search for more jobs:

Popular Employer Salaries for Respiratory Therapist


Apria Healthcare Group Inc, Lincare Inc., Kindred Hospital, Select Specialty Hospitals, and HCA, Inc. are some prominent firms with considerable interest in employing a large team of Respiratory Therapists. Respiratory Therapists flock to Banner Health for generous paychecks, where average earnings of $58K lead the pack in compensation. Other leaders in compensation levels are Kindred Healthcare at $58K, HCA, Inc. at $55K, and Lincare Inc., where Respiratory Therapists annually earn $52K.

Apria Healthcare Group Inc offers the lowest pay, with a median salary of just $47K. The pay scale doesn't vary widely, either; compensation ranges from $41K to $72K. Workers also receive paychecks lighter than average at Kindred Hospital ($49K), Select Specialty Hospitals ($52K), and Lincare Inc. ($52K).

Popular Skills for Respiratory Therapist


Respiratory Therapists report using a large range of skills on the job. Lucky workers who know Long Term Care can expect a significant pay bump, scoring salaries 22 percent above average. Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) are also correlated to pay that is above average, with increases between 6 percent and 22 percent. Those familiar with Critical Care also tend to know Acute Care and Intensive Care Unit (ICU). Those proficient in Emergency Room are, more often than not, also skilled in Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and Acute Care.

Pay by Experience Level for Respiratory Therapist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Respiratory Therapists with more experience do not necessarily bring home bigger paychecks. In fact, experience in this field tends to impact compensation minimally. The average worker who claims fewer than five years of experience earns around $46K. In contrast, however, individuals who report five to 10 years in this occupation see a much larger median of $51K. Respiratory Therapists with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $56K. Individuals who have achieved more than 20 years of experience don't seem to earn much more than people who have 10 to 20 years under their belts; the more senior group reports an average income of $60K.

Pay Difference by Location


Los Angeles offers some of the highest pay in the country for Respiratory Therapists, 34 percent above the national average. Respiratory Therapists will also find cushy salaries in New York (+26 percent), San Diego (+19 percent), Milwaukee (+15 percent), and Dallas (+6 percent). St. Louis is the lowest-paying area, 13 percent south of the national average. Below-median salaries also turn up in Pittsburgh and Indianapolis (10 percent lower and 5 percent lower, respectively).

Related Job Salaries

United States (change)

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)


Comp Managers: Start Here »

Experience Affects Respiratory Therapist Salaries




National Average
$51,000


Skills That Affect Respiratory Therapist Salaries

Long Term Care
up arrow 22%




Trauma Intensive Care Unit (TICU)
up arrow 4%

Critical Care
up arrow 3%

Emergency/Trauma
up arrow 3%

Acute Care
up arrow 2%

Pediatrics
up arrow 2%

Intensive Care Unit (ICU)
up arrow 1%

Emergency Room (ER)
0%

Home Health/Home Care
0%

National Average
$51,000

Patient Education
up arrow 1%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 467 votes.

Gender

Female
62 %
Male
38 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
8%
1-4 years
35%
5-9 years
19%
10-19 years
20%
20 years or more
19%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 78% dental benefits Dental: 69%
vision benefits Vision: 57% employee benefits None: 19%
ADVERTISEMENT