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News Alert on ECMO and Removal of Carbon Dioxide

The performance of Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) and removal of carbon dioxide by respiratory therapists is within the scope of practice of licensed respiratory therapists (RRTs).
9/19/2017
  • Board of Respiratory Care

Alert

In its regulation at 261 Code of Massachusetts Regulations (CMR) 2.02, the Massachusetts Board of Respiratory Care notes that “Respiratory Care is a changing and evolving profession.” Consequently, the Board reviews and updates its rules and regulations from time to time to assure that such rules and regulations are consistent with patient safety, best practices and the guidance of the American Association for Respiratory Care (AARC).

It is the Board’s position that the performance of Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) and removal of carbon dioxide by respiratory therapists is within the scope of practice of licensed respiratory therapists (RRTs).

Any respiratory therapist who performs ECMO must meet the education and training requirements identified in the American Association of Respiratory Care’s (AARC) Position Statement, Respiratory Therapists as Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) Specialist, issued in 1998 and revised in 2007, which endorses the use of qualified and appropriately educated respiratory therapists as ECMO specialists.

The AARC’s Position Statement: Respiratory Therapists as Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) Specialist may be found at the American Association for Respiratory Care website.

Additional Resources for Alert on ECMO and Removal of Carbon Dioxide

Board of Respiratory Care 

We evaluate the qualifications of applicants for respiratory care, and grant licenses to those who qualify. We also establish rules and regulations to ensure the integrity and competence of licensees.

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