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Curriculum Guide

Respiratory Care

  • Updated 4/21/2018

The information contained within this curriculum guide is the official Respiratory Care Program Policies and Procedures effective for the academic year 2017-2018. It is the student’s responsibility to keep updated on any program changes.

General Overview:

The Respiratory Care Program is offered at the Downtown Campus of the college, located near the heart of the Louisville Medical Center Campus. It is a 67-70 credit hour collegiate program leading to an Associate in Applied Science Degree and prepares the student to assume the responsibilities of a respiratory therapist within health care facilities and elsewhere. The curriculum may include course work in the supporting sciences, general education areas and the core program requirements. Interested students should contact the Respiratory Care Program Director for additional information.

Contact Information

Because faculty spend the majority of their time teaching, the preferred method of contact is via email.

Respiratory Care Program/Allied Health Division
Jefferson Community and Technical College
Attn: Mary Beth Keffer
109 E. Broadway HSB477
Louisville, KY 40202

Admission Policies and Procedures:

  • A. College Admission
    • The student must first apply to the college. This can be done on-line or in-person on the first floor of the Jefferson Educational Center.
    • Admission to the College does not imply admission to the Respiratory Care Program. An Admissions Application may be found on the college website.
  • B. Selective Admission:
    • The Respiratory Care Program is a Selective Admissions Program which means not every student in the applicant pool may be accepted. Admission to the Respiratory Care Program is competitive and enrollment in the program is limited because of available faculty, financial, and/or clinical resources at the college or health care facilities. Student selection is made by the President of the College or the President’s designee after considering the recommendations of the Selective Admissions Committee.
    • Preference may be given to applicants who are veterans, active duty personnel, their spouses and also displaced workers who qualify under the Trade Adjustment Act.
    • Students are selected each spring semester of the academic year for admission into the program starting in the fall semester of the same year. The Respiratory Care Program admits twenty (20) students each fall semester.
    • Students will be notified via mail by June 1st of the application year regarding their admission status. 
  • C. Technical Standards:
    • The Respiratory Care Program is a two-year collegiate program designed for those who wish to earn an Associate Degree and prepare to assume the responsibilities of a Respiratory Therapist in health care agencies. The program includes a general education core curriculum as well as respiratory care courses, labs, and clinical practice in affiliated hospitals. The Respiratory Care Program prepares the graduate to play an active role in the restoration and/or maintenance of cardiopulmonary homeostasis. The role of the respiratory therapist includes the assessment of patient cardiopulmonary system, administration of medical gases, aerosol therapy, chest physiotherapy, breathing retraining, and measures for periodic lung expansion. The Graduate Therapist is also able to assume a leadership role (under medical supervision) in the management of artificial airways, continuous mechanical ventilation, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, and pulmonary rehabilitation. Further, he/she is prepared to perform adjunct laboratory procedures such as obtaining and analyzing arterial blood gases and other clinical laboratory data and measuring pulmonary function.
    • Upon completion of the Respiratory Care Program, the graduate is eligible for the national examination process. Please refer to the National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC) website for details on the examination process and the procedures for scheduling an examination. (www.nbrc.org)

Minimum Requirements Established by the Senate Rules for admission into the Applicant Pool:

Graduates of an approved high school or those holding a G.E.D. diploma are eligible to apply. All applicants must have completed 12 college credit hours with a cumulative grade point above 2.0.

Application Process and Deadlines:

The Application process begins by: August 15th of the current academic year.

  1. Attending a Respiratory Care Pre-Admission Conference. Applications to the program are distributed at the Pre-Admission Conferences. 
  2. Submitting to the Respiratory program college transcripts from colleges attended including their current Jefferson Community and Technical College transcript. The transcripts provided to the Respiratory Care program may be copies.
  3. Submit to the Respiratory program any scores from the American College Test: (ACT, CPP ASSET or COMPASS scores) Many times an ACT score can be found on the high school transcript. Please high light the scores with a yellow marker. Copies are acceptable.
  4. If you are not a currently enrolled Jefferson Community and Technical College student you will need to fill out and submit a college application to the Admissions office. All students should check with the admissions office or the People Soft Database to determine if they have been “term activated”. Only students that are “term activated” have access to registration and enrollment.
  5. If official transcripts have been received by the Jefferson Community and Technical College admissions office and a student has received a transcript evaluation, the student DOES NOT have to repeat this process. It is the STUDENT’S RESPONSIBILITY to assure transcripts are on file with the Admissions office.
  6. If a student has completed the ACT exam and does not have the results they may go to www.act.org and request a copy of the scores. Results of COMPASS placement exams taken through KCTCS are not required for admission but may be used when ACT scores are unavailable.
  7. ALL REQUIRED information must be available to the selective admissions committee by midnight March 31st of the year you wish to enroll in the Respiratory Care Program.

Selection Process and Deadlines:

The selection process is based on: The selection process is based on a points system that evaluates a student’s academic performance. Academic performance will earn points according to the following point system:

Point system for the Respiratory Care Program at Jefferson

Post Admission Requirements and Deadlines:

  1. Health disabilities may impair a student’s ability to achieve required competencies. The respiratory therapist specializes in the application of scientific knowledge and theory to practical clinical problems of respiratory care as outlined in a description of the occupation found in the guidelines and essentials of the accredited education program for the respiratory therapist. Therefore, in order to be successful in the program candidates must possess:
    1. Sufficient tactile and visual acuity, such as is needed in the accurate monitoring of life support systems and for the observation necessary for patient assessment.
    2. Sufficient auditory perception to receive verbal communication from patients and members of the health care team and to assess health needs of people through the use of monitoring devices such as cardiac monitors, stethoscopes, inhalators and fire alarms, etc.
    3. Sufficient gross and fine motor coordination to respond promptly and to implement respiratory therapy skills including the manipulation of equipment to meet health needs.
    4. Sufficient communication skills (verbal, non-verbal and written) to interact with individuals and to communicate their needs promptly and effectively.
    5. Sufficient intellectual and emotional functions to plan and implement respiratory care.
  2. Applicants who records indicate weakness in areas of English, Mathematics, Science or Reading Comprehension will be counseled into developmental courses and/or general education courses prior to reconsideration for admission to the Program.
  3. Applicants who were advised by the Admission Committee to enroll in developmental and/or general studies should reapply to the program by April 1st. a. The applicant should submit evidence that completion of the developmental course work indicates that there is reasonable potential for success in the program.
  4. Applicants wishing to apply for advance standing (e.g., via the Vocational Education C.C.S. articulation agreement, NBRC Certification) should request additional information.

Re-admission:

  1. A student who withdraws from or earns lower than a grade of “C” in a respiratory therapist course will be dropped from the Associate Degree Respiratory Therapist Program.
  2. At the time of withdrawal/drop from the Respiratory Care Program, the student must meet with the program director to complete an “Attrition/Re-Admission Plan”.
  3. Application for re-admission should be made prior to April 1.
  4. Re-admission to the Respiratory Care Program will be dependent on available resources.
  5. In order to be considered for re-admission by the Respiratory Care Admissions Committee, the applicant must:
    1. Submit a written request to the program director.
    2. Submit the completed “Attrition/Re-Admission Plan” with appropriate documentation.
    3. Meet current admissions guidelines.
  6. If more than two years have lapsed since initial enrollment in the program, the applicant must repeat the Respiratory Therapy courses.

RESPIRATORY CARE PROGRAM COURSE REQUIREMENTS

A student that has not completed all general education and science support courses may take them concurrently with the Respiratory Care Core courses. However, a student taking general education and science support courses should note the pre-requisites for the Respiratory Care courses below. In addition, the student should be aware that the actual classroom/lab/clinical contact hours exceed the credit hours listed. A student attempting general education and or science support courses along with the Respiratory Care core courses may find themselves attending full time days and part-time evenings.

RCP COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

  • RCP 110 Cardiopulmonary Anatomy and Physiology
    • 3 credits
    • The anatomy and physiology of the respiratory and circulator systems are explored in detail. Emphasis is placed on the interaction of systems in gas exchange and acid-base balance. The structure and function of the chest cage, mechanics of breathing and control of respiration are also included.
    • Lecture 3 hrs/week.
    • Prerequisites: BIO 137 with a grade of C or higher.
    • Co-Requisite BIO 137
  • RCP 120 Theory and Principles of Respiratory Care
    • 4 credits
    • Principles and techniques of therapeutic procedures used in respiratory care are covered. Included are: the safe handling and administration of medical gases; use of humidity and aerosol therapy; providing lung inflation and bronchial hygiene therapy; and airway care. The indication, contraindications and physiologic effects of each therapy are presented with an emphasis on safety and appropriateness of care.
    • Lecture 3 hours/Laboratory 4 hours/week
    • Prerequisites: BIO 137 and MT 110 with a grade of C or higher.
    • CoRequisite: BIO 137 and MT 110
  • RCP 125 Cardiopulmonary Evaluation
    • 4 credits
    • Cardiopulmonary assessment is addressed. Topics include invasive and noninvasive blood gas analysis and interpretation, pulmonary function studies, basic laboratory data interpretation, electrocardiography and assessment of neck and chest imaging.
    • Lecture 3 hours/ Laboratory 4 hours/week.
    • Pre-requisite: RCP 110, BIO 137 and MT 110, MT 145 or MT 150 with a grade of C or higher.
    • Co-requisite: RCP 110
  • RCP 150 Clinical Practice I
    • 2 credits Provides an opportunity for observation and/or performance of techniques for chest physical assessment, medical gas administration, humidity and aerosol therapy, and bronchial hygiene in the assigned clinical setting.
    • Co-requisites: RCP 120 with a grade of C or higher, Valid CPR Card
  • HST 122 Clinical Pathophysiology
    • 3 credits Explores an introduction to the nature of disease and its effects on body systems. Provides a study of pathology and general health management of diseases and injuries across the lifespan. Includes topics of etiology, symptoms, physical and psychological reactions to diseases and injuries.
    • Lecture 3 hours/week
    • Pre-requisites: BIO 137 or BIO 135
  • HST 121 Pharmacology
    • 2 credits
    • Introduces students to the basics of pharmacology/pharmacokinetics, include terms used to describe various effects and reactions from drug usage. Will also introduce metric system and basic dosage calculations common to most fields of study within allied health and nursing.
    • Lecture 2 hour/week
  • RCP 175 Clinical Practice 2
    • 3 credits Students will participate in the health care team while practicing techniques of respiratory care including airway management and bronchial hygiene in the assigned setting.
    • Laboratory 12 hours/week
    • Pre-Requisites: RCP 150 with a grade of C or better.
  • RCP 180 Ventilatory Support
    • 3 credits
    • The technological and physiological aspects of mechanical ventilation including the theory of operation, classification and management of the patient ventilator system are covered.
    • Lecture 2 hours / Laboratory 4 hours/week
    • Pre-Requisites: RCP 120 and RCP 150 with a grade of C or better
  • RCP 190 Advanced Ventilatory Support
    • 2 credits Advanced concepts in ventilatory support, including monitoring and management of the patient ventilator system are addressed. Lecture 1.5 hrs. /Laboratory 2 hrs. /week. Pre-requisites: RCP 175 with a grade of C or better
  • RCP 200 Clinical Practice III
    • 3 credits
    • Students will practice adult mechanical ventilation procedures and airway management in the critical care setting while continuing to perform other respiratory care skills. Laboratory 12 hrs/week. Pre-requisites: RCP 175 with a grade of C or better.
  • RCP 204 Emergency & Special Procedures
    • 3 credits
    • Prepare student to participate in advanced emergency life support and special procedures. Lecture 2.5 hrs/Laboratory 2 hrs/week. Pre-requisites RCP 130 and BIO 139 with a grade of C or better. Co-requisites: RCP 130 and BIO 139.
  • RCP 212 Neonatal/Pediatric Respiratory Care
    • 3 credits Special needs of neonatal and pediatric patients are addressed. Fetal cardiopulmonary development and changes at birth are covered. Equipment, procedures, and methods used in care and evaluation of neonatal and pediatric patients are also covered. Cardiopulmonary conditions and diseases particular to neonates are discussed. Lecture 2.5 hrs/Laboratory 2 hrs/week Pre-requisites: RCP 110 and RCP 190 with a grade of C or better. Co-requisites: RCP 190
  • RCP 214 Advanced Diagnostic Procedures
    • 3 credits Prepares students to assist physician in advanced diagnostic and therapeutic procedures. Lecture 1.5 hrs/Laboratory 2 hrs/week Pre-requisites: RCP 110 with a grade of C or better
  • RCP 225 Clinical Practice 4
    • 3 credits
    • Students will observe and practice advanced cardiopulmonary evaluation techniques while improving efficiency in the ventilatory management of adult patients. Students may also practice pediatric and neonatal mechanical ventilation techniques in the assigned setting.
    • Laboratory 12 hours/week
    • Pre-requisites: RCP 200 with a grade of C or better.
  • RCP 228 Preventive and Long-Term Respiratory Care
    • 2 credits
    • Prevention of cardiopulmonary disorders and care of individuals with long term cardiopulmonary disability are covered including psychosocial and physical needs. Emphasis is on improving the quality of life and cardiopulmonary reserve. Special respiratory care needs of diverse client populations in a variety of settings are covered.
    • Lecture 2 hr/week.
    • Pre-requisites: RCP 110 with a C or better.
  • RCP 250 Clinical Practice 5
    • 3 credits
    • Emphasis is on preparing the student to participate in efficient planning, managing and delivering respiratory care to diverse client populations.
    • Laboratory 12 hours/week.
    • Pre-requisites: RCP 225 with a grade of C or better.
    • Co-requisites: RCP 225

General Education and Science Course work

Course Number Course Name Credit hour
BIO 137 Human Anatomy & Physiology 1 4
BIO 139 Human Anatomy & Physiology 2 4
MAT 150 College Algebra OR MAT 110 Applied Mathematics OR MAT 145 Contemporary College Math (3)
COM 252 Introduction to Interpersonal Communications OR COM 181 Basic Public Speaking (3)
PSY 110 General Psychology OR (3) PSY 100 Introduction to Psychology OR (4) SOC 101 Introduction to Sociology (3) 3-4
ENG 101 Writing 1 3
AHS 105 Introduction to Health Care (3) OR GE101 3
  Heritage/Humanities 3
 

Computer Literacy

*A student must demonstrate Computer Literacy Skills or enroll in a Computer Course. CIS 100 or CIS 110 or OS 105

3

Core Course work

Course Number  Course Name  Credit hour
HST 101 Health Care Basic Skills I 3
HST 121 Pharmacology 2
HST 122 Clinical Pathophysiology 3
RCP 110 Cardiopulmonary Anatomy and Physiology 3
RCP 120 Theory and Principles of Respiratory Care 5
RCP 125 Cardiopulmonary Evaluation * 4
RCP 175 Clinical Practice 2 3
RCP 180 Ventilatory Support 3
RCP 190 Advanced Ventilatory Support 2
RCP 200 Clinical Practice 3 3
RCP 204 Emergency and Special Procedures 3
RCP 212 Neonatal/Pediatric Respiratory Care 3
RCP 214 Advanced Diagnostic Procedures 3
RCP 225 Clinical Practice 4 3
RCP 228 Preventive and Long-Term Respiratory Care 2
RCP 250 Clinical Practice 5 3
  • * RCP 125 Electrocardiographic and Cardiac Monitoring Technician Certificate Option A student may elect to participate in the Electrocardiographic and Cardiac Monitoring Technician Certificate Option while enrolled in or upon the completion of RCP 125.

EKG Certificate Requirements:

Course Number  Course Name  Credit hour
BIO 137 Human Anatomy and Physiology 1 4
BIO 139 Human Anatomy and Physiology 2 4
MAT 150 College Algebra OR MAT 110 Applied Mathematics (3) OR MAT 145 Contemporary College Math (3) 3
RCP 110 Cardiopulmonary Anatomy and Physiology 3
RCP 125 Cardiopulmonary Evaluation 4
RCP 150  Clinical Practice 1 (2) OR HST 101 Basic Skills 1 (3) 2-3
  In addition Twenty (20) hours of documented clinical electrocardiographic experience or documented Electrocardiographic & Cardiac Monitoring Competence is required. All Courses must be completed with a grade of C or higher.  

 

Pre-requisites to attend program

EXAMPLE OF POSSIBLE COURSE SEQUENCE

FIRST YEAR

Session Course Credit hour
Summer MAT 110 Applied Mathematics (formerly MAH 151) OR MAT 150 College Algebra OR MAT 145 Contemporary College math 3
  BIO 137 Human Anatomy & Physiology I (formerly BSL 110) 4
  Total 7
FALL RCP 110 Cardiopulmonary Anatomy and Physiology 3
  RCP 120 Theory and Principles of Respiratory Care 4
  HST 101 Health Care Basic Skills I 3
  BIO 139 Human Anatomy & Physiology II /or Summer 4
  HST 122 Clinical Pathophysiology 3
  Total 13
SPRING RCP 125 Cardiopulmonary Evaluation 4
  HST 121 Pharmacology 2
  RCP 175 Clinical Practice 3
  RCP 180 Ventilatory Support 4
  COM 252/181 Communications or Basic Public Speaking 5
  Total 15
SUMMER ENG 101 English 101 3
  BIO 139 Human Anatomy & Physiology II (formerly BSL 111) 4
  Total 3-7

SECOND YEAR

Session  Course  Credit hour
FALL RCP 190 Advanced Ventilatory Support 2
  RCP 200 Clinical Practice 3
  RCP 214 Advanced Diagnostic Procedures 3
  RCP 212 Neonatal/Pediatric Respiratory Care  3
  PSY 110/100 General Psychology or Introduction of Psychology 3-4
  Total 14-15
SPRING RCP 204 Emergency and Special Procedures 3
  RCP 228 Preventive and Long Term Care 2
  RCP 225 Clinical Practice 4 3
  RCP 250 Clinical Practice 5 3
  Heritage/Humanities 3
  Total 14
  TOTAL CREDITS: 67-70 *  
  • Transfer students are not required to take AHS 105. Other exemptions may apply.
  • ** A student must demonstrate competency in computer science or enrollment in a computer course: CIS 100/110 or OS 105 or GE 150

Criminal Background Checks and Drug Testing:

All Allied Health majors with a clinical component within their major must submit to a criminal background check and drug screening. This is to ensure a safe clinical environment for both students and the public and to meet the contractual requirements of area healthcare facilities. Situations in which a student does not have a satisfactory background check or drug test, will be reviewed by the Dean of Allied Health on a case-by-case basis.

Convictions involving the following crimes may serve to disqualify a person from participating in required clinical learning experiences:

  1. any felony, whether listed below or not
  2. crimes involving drugs, including but not limited to unlawful possession or distribution
  3. crimes of physical violence to include any type of abuse (child, spousal, or of the elderly), abduction such as kidnapping, manslaughter, murder, robbery, sexual crimes, possession of a restricted fire arm or any related weapons offenses, assault and battery or
  4. conviction of a misdemeanor related to abuse, neglect or exploitation.

Drug screening may be required of a student at any time throughout the course of study if there is reasonable suspicion on the part of the program faculty that the student may be using a controlled substance not prescribed by a health care provider. Positive findings on a drug screen or refusal to submit to a requested drug screen will result in immediate administrative withdrawal of the student from the program. Each student will be given the designated facility and time once they are accepted into the program. The cost of background checks and drug testing is the responsibility of each student.

Accreditation:

“The Respiratory Care Program, Associate Degree, at Jefferson Community and Technical College Downtown Campus is accredited by the Commission of Accreditation for Respiratory Care (www.coarc.com).” Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care, 1248 Harwood Road, Bedford, Texas 76021; Phone 817.283.2835.

Jefferson Community and Technical College is a public, comprehensive, postsecondary institution accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award the associate degree.

Credentialing Exam(s)/Licensure:

Upon successful completion of this program, the graduate is eligible to sit for the Respiratory Care national entry level credentialing examination. (CRT/RRT) Practitioner licensing is based upon successful completion of the Respiratory Care national board examination.

Financial Information/Expenses:

Specific questions concerning financial assistance should be directed to the Downtown Campus Financial Aid Office located on the 4th floor of the Jefferson Education Center or by calling 502.213.2146.

  1. Tuition – This information may be found in the college catalog or on-line at the college’s website.
  2. Books including printer and printer supplies
  3. Uniforms including stethoscope and accessories
  4. Liability insurance (Included in tuition)
  5. Criminal Background Check & Drug Testing
  6. Kettering and/or Persing Review Seminars
  7. Transportation to clinical sites
  8. Expenses are discussed at the pre admission conference

Additional Information:

Incoming freshmen

  • Students must take one of the following college introduction courses – GEN 100, GEN 102 or AHS 105 within the first two (2) semesters of college.
  • Students transferring college course work into Jefferson Community and Technical College are exempt from this requirement.

The Kentucky Community and Technical College System does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, religion, marital status, sex or handicap in employment, educational programs or activities as set forth in Title IX of the Educational Amendment of 1972, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

View the Pre-admission Conference Dates/Sites