In order to legally practice Respiratory care in the State of California, you have to be licensed by the state , and in order to maintain your license , you have to renew it every two years . To renew your license you have to take continuing educations courses ( CEU’s) relevant to Respiratory Care and pay a $250 renewal fee.
What makes this a tough call for me, is that because of my asthma, I can no longer work as an RT (not many employers will hire someone who’s in the hospital every month), and because of that , I don’t really need my license anymore. $250 bucks every two years, plus the fees associated with the continued education requirements is a lot of money when you live on a shoestring. I could do a lot of other things with that money.
On the other hand, Ive been licensed continuously since the law went into effect back in 1985… nearly 23 years ago. I feel like a Respiratory pioneer of sorts. It’s hard to let go of a title which you’ve spend your entire adult life making a living on.
If I let my license elapse or retire it , and decide later that I wanted it back, I would have to start all over from scratch, which means digging up old college transcripts, getting background checks done , taking proficiency exams , etc etc. Im’ too old to go through that crap again.
So I guess in away, its less stressful just to bite the bullet, complete the required CEU’s, fork out the dough and get renewed.
They mail the forms out early, but I still have until September to make a final decision in which I will mostly likely renew, but I’m also pretty sure that this will be the last one I’ll do. By the time the next renewal deadline rolls around , and assuming I’m still alive, I’ll be 56 years old. By then I’m pretty sure I can let it go.
A lot of people ask me, ” Did you become an RT because of your asthma?” The answer is …yes and no. Let’s just say that having asthma made it alot easier for me to relate to my patients. On the other side of that, being an RT doesn’t always make it easier to be a patient.
PS….Speaking of patients, today I’m going to become one again. They’re nervous about my low PFs and my persistent symptoms during past week, so today they’re re-admitting me to the hospital. Hopefully , it will only be a short visit.