lrt license
The deed is done. As of today Im longer allowed to practice Respiratory Care in the State California. I finally submitted the paperwork to place my RCP license into retirement status, bringing my 3 and a half decade career in this field to an end…at least for now.

Ive been going back and forth on this decision for years now, but nearing the age of 60, in questionable health and not having worked a shift in almost 10 years, I think it’s the right move. There’s really no benefit in continuing to maintain and active license if Im not going to return to the workforce. Even if I renewed my license and kept up with the continuing education requirements, technology in the field has changed so much that if I ever returned to a paid position in an acute care setting, I would have to do a lot of catching up.

License or not, I consider myself an excellent therapist with a solid background. I still hold the RRT credential which will never expire and can make re-applying for state licensure much easier if I ever needed to. It would require submitting school transcripts and being finger printed and vetted all over again, but at least the door isn’t completely shut.

Going forward I will always be involved in the Respiratory Therapy scene, but from now on as a patient, not a provider.

State License


In 1985, the State of California became one of the first states in the USA to required all Respiratory Care Practitioners/Therapists be licensed in order to legally practice. Here is my original license.

RCP Credentials 1

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9 thoughts on “Hanging up the stethoscope

  1. Zim says:

    Maybe it is good decision, maybe not… You know better. I wish You good luck 🙂

    1. Thank you Zim. I think it’s the right decision.

  2. kerri says:

    I remember you saying this [pretty much verbatim :)] when we were hanging out. I definitely agree. I think, as always, it’s really valuable that you’re able to see things from both sides–patient and professional. . . and that for the time being, anyways, that this perspective is what’s probably guided you a bit more clearly into that final decision.

    With that said, all your experience on both sides of the coin will obviously make getting back into the field easier if that path rises up–and, though it might be the “hard way”, I bet it’ll be a far better process and more meaningful/valuable for you personally, to have to do some degree of re-training/re-certifying to be able to practice again, anyways (and, obviously, the confidence from doing that would be the key thing!).

    That said, if you come up to that path and wind up having to do all that work to re-certify, you might just decide to choose a different arrow than healthcare anyways… which would probably mean more training anyways, right? I think it’s a smart choice. Who knows what you might get into next–RT, UFO chaser, Jelly Belly product developer, segway tour operator… Might close some doors briefly if you do go back to work, but, also less internal pressure to resume the same path, right? 🙂

    As long as you made the right choice for you, then that’s the important thing–and, I personally think you did :). xoxo <3

  3. Liz Bernard says:

    Sounds like you made the best decision for you, but I have to disagree with your following statement: “I for one, wouldn’t want someone who hasn’t worked in a hospital for 10 years taking of a critically ill loved one”

    I would take someone who has the knowledge of a Respiratory Therapist AND the experience (and compassion) of a fellow asthmatic over a non-asthmatic therapist fresh out of school, hands down.

    Hope your recovery from your recent exacerbation treats you kindly. I know it’s tough!

    All the best from LA,

  4. Howard Long says:

    All I can say is good luck! I believe that you actually made the right decision for yourself. Cheers!

  5. I do not know what to say but I believe in your decisions. I think that’s your right decision together with a little luck.

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