Dalton State’s Respiratory Therapy Program Receives Award For Excellence

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Dalton State College’s Respiratory Therapy program has received the Distinguished Registered Respiratory Therapist Credentialing Success Award from the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care. Only eight percent of accredited programs nationwide receive such recognition.

The Respiratory Therapy program, directed by Max Pierce, is recognized by CoARC for having a credentialing success of 90 percent or above. Since the program started at the College in 2006, six respiratory classes have graduated with an average of 14 students per graduating class. The program has a rate of 90 percent job placement among graduates, Pierce said..

“Our faculty members in the Respiratory Therapy program and all of our Health Professions programs have always done a wonderful job training their students,” says Dr. Gina Kertulis-Tartar, Interim Dean of the School of Health Professions.

There are two credentials that respiratory therapists can achieve upon graduating: Certified Respiratory Therapist and Registered Respiratory Therapist. Dalton State’s program has a 100 percent pass rate of graduates receiving the CRT credential, and better than 90 percent receiving the RRT credential. The national average pass rate is 64 percent on the RRT exams.

“The program is challenging,” says Pierce. “However, we have a very high retention rate, with 92 percent of the students that begin the program finishing and graduating. Several program graduates have gone on to take leadership roles in area facilities, and some have advanced their education to become physician assistants.”

 “We were thrilled to receive the award; it is certainly validation that we are doing a good job of educating future healthcare practitioners,” he said.

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