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General Laws

Section 23R. The following words as used in sections twenty-three R to twenty-three BB, inclusive, unless the context otherwise requires, shall have the following meanings:—

“Respiratory care”, is a health profession that, under direction of a licensed physician, who has special expertise in respiratory care, utilizes the application of scientific principles for the identification, prevention, remediation, research, and rehabilitation of acute or chronic cardiopulmonary dysfunction thereby promoting optimum health and function. Respiratory care practice includes, but is not limited to, the therapeutic and diagnostic use of the following as ordered by a physician: medical gases, gas administering devices, humidification and aerosols, administration of aerosol medications, support services for mechanically ventilated patients, postural drainage, bronchopulmonary hygiene, breathing exercises, respiratory rehabilitation, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, maintaining natural and artificial airways, the understanding and reporting of tests as aids to diagnosis or the planning of treatment programs. Respiratory care shall also include the measuring ventilatory volumes, pressures and flows, collecting specimens of blood and other materials, pulmonary function testing, hemodynamic and other related physiologic monitoring of the cardiopulmonary system. Respiratory care shall also include teaching both patient and family respiratory care procedures as part of a patient’s ongoing program; consultation services for the health educational and community agencies. Respiratory care shall also include teaching of the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to perform the above mentioned activities.

“Respiratory therapist”, a person who is duly licensed to practice respiratory care in the commonwealth in accordance with section twenty-three S.

“Board”, the board of respiratory care established under the provisions of section eleven B of chapter thirteen.

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