As a respiratory therapist, you've likely never been more in demand. A ever-present health crisis along with a growing geriatric population means that you won't be out of work anytime soon. Whether you're looking for your first job or ready to make a change, we're here to help.
With 300+ resume examples and writing guides, Resume.io is an expert career resource backed up by professionally-designed tools for job seekers. This resume guide, along with the corresponding respiratory therapist resume example will cover the following topics:
- What does a respiratory therapist do?
- How to write a respiratory therapist resume (tips and tricks)
- The best format for a respiratory therapist resume
- Advice on each section of your resume (summary, work history, education, skills)
- Professional resume layout and design hints.
What does a respiratory therapist do?
Respiratory therapists assist people with cardiopulmonary and breathing disorders by providing them with beneficial therapy programs. They interview patients and design treatment programs that aim to alleviate and treat respiratory issues. Respiratory therapists can work with patients suffering from a variety of breathing issues including chronic respiratory diseases, asthma, emphysema, bronchitis, pneumonia, and more. Respiratory therapists typically consult with physicians to determine the best course of treatment for patients. They perform diagnostic tests to measure lung capacity and test blood to determine oxygen and carbon dioxide levels. Respiratory therapists may perform chest physiotherapy on patients to remove mucous from their lungs. They also utilize specialized equipment like ventilators to help patients breathe better.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates the need for respiratory therapists to increase by 23 percent over the coming decade – that's much faster than the average for other professions!
How to write a respiratory therapist resume
The very first step in writing your respiratory therapist resume is understanding what sections to include. Your CV should contain the following elements:
- The resume header
- The resume summary (aka profile or personal statement)
- The employment history section
- The resume skills section
- The education section
A successful respiratory therapist resume should showcase the necessary clinical experience, education, and licensure required to practice as a respiratory therapist. The candidate’s ability to provide optimal care to patients suffering from a variety of breathing disorders is essential. Respiratory therapists should be adept in working with other healthcare professionals to design appropriate and beneficial treatment programs for individual patients. Your resume should also call attention to your ability to communicate well with patients, as this is an integral part of your role as a respiratory therapist. Be sure to highlight essential skills like knowledge of cardiopulmonary therapies, Interpersonal communication skills, diagnostic skills, and knowledge of mechanical ventilation systems. Your resume should also make note of your high level of compassion and your drive to help patients achieve greater health and happiness.
Choosing the best resume format for a respiratory therapist
Respiratory therapists should opt for the reverse chronological format for their resumes. That's because this traditional resume centers on an employment history section where you'll be able to share your previous experience and training. While other types of resume formats exist, they are best suited to entry-level candidates or independent workers. For respiratory therapists, the reverse chronological format is the way to go since it is the preferred format of hiring managers and the automated tracking systems that are built into most online application portals.
Resume summary example
The resume summary is the first 3-5 sentences at the top of the page where you can speak directly to the employer and highlight your biggest accomplishments and attributes. This is the place to include any can't-miss education or experience. Remember to use powerful action verbs and job specific information. Below you'll find the summary from our resume sample.
Experienced respiratory therapist with over three years of experience helping patients to overcome breathing difficulties and enhance their lives despite cardiopulmonary disorders. Adept in working with patients suffering from a variety of breathing issues and chronic respiratory diseases. Bringing forth the ability to maintain professionalism and a focused mind in high-pressure scenarios. Committed to helping patients achieve their best life with the assistance of beneficial respiratory therapy programs.
Employment history sample
The employment history section is the place to list all positions relevant to a respiratory therapist position. Make sure to include the employer's name, job title, dates worked and location. In the bullet points, it's a good idea to quantify your duties by including the number of patients seen, for example. Remember to use powerful action verbs and mention job specific accomplishments that prove you are an excellent candidate. Check out the employment history section from our resume sample below.
- Worked in collaboration with physicians and case supervisors to create effective treatment programs for patients.
- Worked to educate and treat patients with respiratory issues.
- Handled all clinical applications of respiratory care.
- Assessed the pulmonary status of patients and reviewed their medical charts and performed in-depth physical examinations.
- Tested, adjusted, and applied oxygen, aerosol and humidity as needed.
CV skills example
While your entire CV is testament to your abilities, the skills section is the best place to point out your areas of expertise. The bullet point format means that this the place to focus on skills that can be described in a word or two, or anything you don't want the employer to miss. Be sure to include job specific skills that will make you stand out as a candidate. See our skills resume sample below.
- Optimal patient care practices
- Cardiopulmonary therapies
- Excellent communication skills
- Oxygen therapy skills
- Knowledge of ventilation equipment
- Patient education
Respiratory therapist resume education example
Your qualifications as a respiratory therapist took years of hard work and education. This is the place to mention all degrees and certifications. Any honors or distinctions should be noted here as well. Since you've most certainly completed hire education, there's no need to include your high school diploma. See our education resume sample below.
- 2004 SUNY Geneseo, Respiratory Care Program
- 2000-2004 Manhattan College, Bachelor of Science in Biology NY, NY
Resume layout and design
An attractive layout and design can quickly make your resume stand out – even among candidates with similar experience. While respiratory therapist resumes don't need to be full of bright color and images, a touch of style, especially in the header can go a long way. Make sure to stick with professional font styles and sizes and leave a healthy balance of white space to text.
If you're not an expert in graphic design, you may consider using a professionally-created resume template to give you a head start on your page layout.
Key takeaways for a respiratory therapist resume
- As medical professionals, respiratory therapists are in high demand – get started on that resume to land your next perfect position.
- Make sure to stick with the reverse chronological structure and to quantify your experience.
- Check out our respiratory therapist resume sample for more ideas on creating a great header.