How is COVID-19 still impacting respiratory therapy services? What adjustments and adaptations should professionals still be making to endure the crisis?
Respiratroy therapy is directly impacted by the increased number of patients presenting with COVID and requiring extended inpatient care. In the outpatient diagnostic setting, the primary service is the pulmonary function test (PFT) which is an aerosol generating procedure. The aerosol-generating procedures place RTs at increased personal risk for exposure to COVID. To help identify infected patients RT departments may have implemented a protocol to COVID Screen all patients prior to performance of PFT. In some instances (depending on the cost of the test) this COVID Screen test may cost more than the expected reimbursement for the PFT.