You might recall that in the summer of 2008, I made the decision of NOT renewing my RCP license when it became due. I did so, because for all practical purposes, I didn’t ( and still don’t) plan on returning to active employment in the Respiratory care field….or for that matter….any field. At the time, I didn’t see the sense of continuing to pay bi-annual license fees if I wasn’t going to continue working as an RT. I had actually kept my license and CEU’s current for 2 years after I stopped working, because I didn’t want think of myself as a non RT. I basically kept it active for security blanket reasons.
Well, now I’m faced with that decision again, except this time, whatever I decide ….will be permanent! I have less than 4 months to either pay the late fees totaling $460.00 and renew my license, OR let the time lapse and loose my license permanently. The only other option I have, would be to voluntarily retire my license. Either way, the action would be permanent. Of course, if I had no intention of working again, it would probably look better on paper if I just retired my license.
But, here’s the deal, if I retire my license or let it lapse out, and then sometime down the road I decide I want to practice RT again, I would have to re-apply for a new license all over again from scratch. That means proving that I graduated from an accredited RT school and taking all the entrance exams over again, getting a background check and fingerprinted. Im not sure Id want to go through all that again. And how on earth would I be healthy enough to work full time again? Well, there’s a chance ( albeit very small) ,that I might actually get a new set of lungs sometime in the future ( ie transplant). If that were to occur before I reach the age of 65, I might be healthy enough to work full time again, in which case, my RCP license would come in pretty handy. But again, that’s a very small if.
* For all you non-RTs out there, it’s important to note that while I don’t have an active license to practice Respiratory care in the State of California, I’m still Registered with the NBRC as an RRT ( Registered Respiratory Therapist.) Those credentials have nothing to do with state licensure and can never be taken away from me.
So, what would you do if you were in my shoes?
(My RCP and NBRC Credentials)
This is my very first license to practice Respiratory care. In 1985, the State of California became one of the first states in the USA to required that all Respiratory Care Practitioners be licensed in order to legally practice.
Here’s something funny; I got my first job as an RT in 1977. My salary at that time was $4.62 per hr. That same position, as of 6/2009, pays 10 times that amount.