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FAQ: Respiratory Care

Enrollment for the respiratory care program is limited to 24 students. Up to eight students are accepted each year at the Rapid City campus at Monument Health and up to 16 are accepted at the Sioux Falls campus located at both Avera and Sanford hospitals.

We have no limit for enrollment in the pre-respiratory care program.

The Respiratory Care program holds continuing accreditation with the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC), with the main clinical location in Sioux Falls (CoARC program number 200070) and a satellite location in Rapid City (CoARC program number 300015).

CoARC accredits respiratory therapy education programs in the United States. To achieve this end, it utilizes an "outcomes based" process. Programmatic outcomes are performance indicators that reflect the extent to which the educational goals of the program are achieved and by which program effectiveness is documented. Program outcomes data is available on the CoARC website.

Labor department statistics portend major growth in the health care industry and the report on respiratory therapy should really put wind in the sails of potential respiratory therapists.

South Dakota’s health care industry is projected to be among the largest growth industries through 2028, according to the Labor Market Information Center within the South Dakota Department of Labor and Regulation. The industry is projected to add 6,472 workers to the state’s economy between 2018 and 2028. The rate of growth is projected to be 11.3%, much faster than the 7.1% projected for all industries.

The national median pay with an associate degree in respiratory therapy is $62,810, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

For respiratory therapists, the growth rate is 28%, ranking third of all occupations.

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You will also have access to seminars and conferences, like the South Dakota Society for Respiratory Care (SDSRC). You can build your resume and network with potential employers by sitting on the SDSRC board of directors as a student representative. In addition, SDSRC offers scholarships and opportunities to attend the American Association for Respiratory Care conferences.

Students complete their second professional year at Monument Health in Rapid City, SD or Avera McKennan Hospital and Sanford USD Medical Center in Sioux Falls, SD.

Students will develop skills and master concepts in:

  • Patient assessment
  • Neonatal care
  • Hemodynamic analysis
  • Ventilator management
  • Emergency and trauma
  • Pulmonary diagnostic testing
  • Disease management
  • Respiratory pharmacology

Students in the Respiratory Care Program are exposed to advanced technology and the latest respiratory equipment, including:

  • Ventilators
  • Ultrasound
  • Blood analyzing machines
  • Medical charting systems

For more information, contact: