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CCH October 2017 Department Discovery: CCMH Cardiopulmonary Services

CCH October 2017 Department Discovery: CCMH Cardiopulmonary Services

The Campbell County Health October 2017 Department Discovery shines a light on the Campbell County Memorial Hospital Respiratory Therapy department, located on the second floor of CCMH.

Respiratory Therapy provides comprehensive care and testing for patients suffering from breathing disorders caused by heart or lung disease.

Respiratory Therapy and Sleep Center Services Director Gary Cortez says that his staff of Respiratory Therapists focuses on providing the highest level of care possible to patients.

“Our staff of highly trained, board credentialed and state licensed respiratory therapists who provide round the clock respiratory care throughout the facility to include all ages from newborns through geriatric patients in a variety of clinical settings while striving to promote our goal of quality respiratory care with positive patient outcomes,” says Gary.

For those who don’t know, a respiratory therapist is someone who cares for patients who have trouble breathing—for example, from a chronic respiratory disease, such as asthma or emphysema. They also provide emergency care to patients suffering from heart attacks, stroke, drowning, or shock. Respiratory Therapists earn a college degree in Respiratory Care and must pass a test given by the National Board for Respiratory Care to obtain the credentials of a CRT or RRT.

What do respiratory therapists at CCMH spend some of their time doing? Often, it’s some of the exams below:

  • Pulmonary Function Test (PFT), which can be used to help diagnose asthma, allergies, emphysema (COPD), and other lung disorders.
  • Electroencephalogram (EEG), which can play a role in diagnosing brain disorders such as brain injury, stroke, sleep disorders, or dementia.
  • Electrocardiogram (EKG/ECG), which looks for patterns among heartbeats and rhythms to diagnose various heart conditions.
  • Shape Test, which is an exercise test to evaluate shortness of breath.
  • Sleep Study, which is performed in the Sleep Center, and is specially designed for sleep studies and provides a full range of diagnostic and treatment for more than 70 different sleep disorders. The most commonly treated sleep disorders are: snoring, sleep apnea, insomnia, restless legs syndrome, and shift work disorder. (FYI: The Sleep Center at Campbell County Health is accredited by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) and is one of only three accredited programs in the state of Wyoming.)

If you didn’t know, October 20-26 is the American Association for Respiratory Care's Respiratory Care Week! Please help us celebrate our respiratory therapists, and all that they do for our patients.

A big round of applause to the Respiratory Therapy crew! Thank you for helping to keep our patients healthy and happy. You can learn more about Respiratory Therapy, and the services provided, at www.cchwyo.org/RT.