States with RRT Entry to Licensure

States that Require the RRT Credential as Entry to Licensure

The following states have passed laws or rules that move the profession forward to require the RRT credential as entry level to licensure. As you can see from the descriptions below, language regarding the RRT credential and the way CRTs are grandfathered vary. For additional information, states seeking to move to the RRT credential for entry level into the profession should review AARC’s Guidance Document for additional information.

Ohio — Rule

Effective date Jan. 1, 2015: “On and after Jan. 1, 2015, the board recognizes successful completion of both portions of the R.R.T. examination administered by the NBRC or its successor organization….” Provides a 3-year grandfather window for those with a CRT credential prior to Jan. 1, 2015, “if the examination was passed within three years prior to the date of application for an Ohio license.”

California — Law

Effective Jan. 1, 2015: “Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, an applicant shall not receive a license under this chapter without first successfully passing all parts of the national registered respiratory therapist examination.” The grandfather clause for CRTs states: “(a), any person applying for licensure who provides evidence that he or she passed the national certified respiratory therapist examination prior to Jan. 1, 2015, shall not be required to pass the national registered respiratory therapist examination, if there is no evidence of prior license or job-related discipline, as determined by the board in its discretion.”

Arizona — Rule

Effective Jan. 1, 2017: “An applicant shall submit or have submitted on the applicant’s behalf the following with the license application form: 1. If NBRC-registered, a copy of the applicant’s: a. NBRC-issued registration; b. RRT examination results; or c. If grandfathered, CRT examination results.”  For CRTs, the grandfather clause is found in the “Definitions” and means “to license a respiratory therapist who has a CRT credential and applies for licensure before Jan. 1, 2017, without meeting the qualifications required by these rules.” However, CRTs licensed in another state after Jan. 1, 2017, and who apply for licensure in Arizona must have a RRT credential or equivalent: “Either a copy of the results of the RRT examination or a copy of another examination administered to the applicant, the results of the other examination, and any information necessary to enable the Board to determine whether the other examination is equivalent to the RRT examination.” If an out-of-state therapist with the CRT credential applied prior to Jan. 1, 2017, then a license is issued. But will not issue a license to an out-of-state therapist with the CRT credential without the RRT credential. In-state CRTs, if they keep their license current, will continue to be licensed. If, however, the Arizona’s CRT license lapses more than 3 months the CRT will not be able to have it renewed without the RRT credential.

Oregon — Rule

Effective Jan. 1, 2018: “An individual applying for licensure to practice respiratory care must: (6) Submit satisfactory evidence of having an active credential as an RRT through the NBRC. Proof of having an active RRT credential must be submitted directly to the Office by the NBRC; (7) Submit proof of having passed the Respiratory Therapy Oregon Laws and Administrative rules examination within two years before the date of application. The grandfather clause for CRTs states: “An individual licensed prior to Jan. 1, 2018, who obtained licensure with a Certified Respiratory Therapist (CRT) credential through the NBRC is not required to obtain the RRT credential.”

New Mexico — Law

Effective Jan. 1, 2018: “For application submitted prior to Jan. 1, 2018, proof of successfully passing the national board standard examination resulting in credentialing as either a, certified respiratory therapist (CRT) or registered respiratory therapist (RRT). Beginning Jan. 1, 2018, all applicants must show proof of passing the national board exam resulting in credentialing of a registered respiratory therapist (RRT) and maintaining a current registered respiratory therapist (RRT) credential.”

New Jersey — Law

Effective July 21, 2017: “The board shall issue a license to perform respiratory care to an applicant, who, at the time of the effective date of this act, has passed the Registered Respiratory Therapist examination offered by the National Board for Respiratory Care, or by a successor organization.”  There is no specific grandfather clause regarding CRTs because their license once obtained is safe. However, if a RT who holds the CRT credential moves to NJ from another state, it basically would be up to the discretion of the Board to determine if they meet the requirements for licensure under section 45:14E-13 of their state law. “Upon payment to the board of fee and the submission of a written application on forms provided by it, the board shall issue without examination a license to a respiratory care practitioner who holds a valid licensed issued by another state or possession of the United States or the District of Columbia which has education and experience requirements substantially equivalent to the requirement of this act, provided, that, the applicant has not previously failed the board exam referred to in section 15 of this act, in which case licensing shall be at the discretion of the board.”

Washington — Law

Effective July 1, 2022: RCW 18.89.090: “(1) The secretary shall issue a license to any applicant who demonstrates to the secretary’s satisfaction that the following requirements have been met: (a) Graduation from a school approved by the secretary or successful completion of alternate training which meets the criteria established by the secretary; (b)(i) For licenses issued prior to July 1, 2022, successful completion of an examination administered or approved by the secretary.(ii) For licenses issued on or after July 1, 2022, successful completion of both an examination administered or approved by the secretary and a clinical simulation examination administered or approved by the secretary. The secretary may deem an applicant in compliance with this subsection (1)(b)(ii) if the applicant possesses an active credential in good standing as a registered respiratory therapist issued by a national organization such as the national board for respiratory care, if one of the requirements for the issuance of the credential is passage of the examinations required by this subsection (1)(b)(ii); (c) Successful completion of any experience requirement established by the secretary; (d) Good moral character. In addition, applicants shall be subject to the grounds for denial or issuance of a conditional license under chapter 18.130 RCW. (2) The secretary shall establish by rule what constitutes adequate proof of meeting the criteria.”

West Virginia — Rule

Effective July 1, 2022:  “Upon payment of required fees, an applicant for a license to practice respiratory care shall submit to the board official written, verified by oath, evidence that the applicant; has completed a board approved respiratory care educational program; and On or after July 1, 2022 holds a current valid Registered Respiratory Therapist Credential conferred by the National Board of Respiratory Care or its successor organizations; prior to July 1, 2022 holds a current valid Certified Respiratory Therapist or Registered Respiratory Therapist credential from the National Board of Respiratory Care or its successor organizations.” The applicant must successfully pass an examination administered by the state or by a national agency approved by the board. The board shall set the passing score for the examination. The same revisions to the rule that require an RRT credential as of the effective date of the rule also apply to reinstatement of licenses.

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