Response by Joseph Goss, Delegate
In the survey sent out late last year, a comment was received about the Advanced Practice Respiratory Therapist (APRT) license. Introducing the APRT is easier said than done but it’s a very worthy effort nonetheless. It involves three, but I would argue four groups: Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC): the National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC): the American Association for Respiratory Care (AARC) and my fourth, us, the state society (NJSRC).
Where are we today?
Currently, the CoARC has completed the development of the accreditation standards for advanced practice. These standards were approved at their November 2016 meeting. The standards identify the primary role, description, and eligibility for an APRT education program. As listed on the CoARC website, the standards are divided into five sections: (A) Program Administration and Sponsorship; (B) Institutional and Personnel Resources; (C) Program Goals, Outcomes, and Assessment; (D) Curriculum; and (E) Fair Practices and Recordkeeping.
The NBRC has appointed representatives to serve on an ad hoc committee. One committee goal is examining issues related to the credentialing of the APRT. Additionally, in anticipation of an eventual credentialing examination for these therapists, the NBRC is working with trademark counsel to protect, through intent to use, the titles APRT and RRT AP.
Just a few weeks ago, the AARC published a request for proposals inviting qualified organizations to submit a bid for conducting a national needs assessment related to the APRT. In part, the needs assessment helps o determine future employment predictions of an APRT. This is the second most difficult part of the process.
The final part involves us, the NJSRC. We, along with other societies, must lobby state legislatures to obtain licensure. Without the ability to practice, the efforts of the CoARC, NBRC, and AARC would all be in vain. This will be the most difficult part to accomplish, as obstacles and resistance may arise from other organizations.
What can you do to help with these processes?
Respond to our requests for help by writing letters or sending emails. We need to let legislators know that our membership supports moving the profession forward.