Respiratory Care Practitioners

Respiratory Care Practitioners (RCPs), under the direction of a physician, evaluate, treat and care for patients with breathing disorders. These breathing disorders include, but are not limited to, asthma, chronic bronchitis, emphysema, cystic fibrosis and coronary heart disease. RCPs also manage and monitor patients on life support, treat premature infants, patients with lung cancer, AIDS and accident victims. For more information, please go the American Association for Respiratory Care’s website at

The applicant shall complete an applicationpdf supplied by the Board:

  1. Be of good moral character.
  2. Be at least 18 years old.
  3. Pay the application fee.
  4. Documentation of certification by the National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC).
  5. Documentation of graduation from a respiratory care program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Educational Programs (CAAHEP) or its successors.
  6. Demonstrate oral and written competency in English as required by the Board.
  7. Meet any other requirements established by the Board.

The application process, on average, may take 3 – 6 weeks. However, the process may take longer depending on the individual applicant’s circumstance or if the individual does not provide the required documentation on a timely basis.
  1. Completion of a reinstatement application pdf approved by the Board.
  2. Payment of a reinstatement fee.
  3. Satisfactory evidence of compliance with the continuing education requirements.
  4. Verification from the Maryland Office of the Comptroller that the applicant has paid all undisputed taxes and unemployment insurance contributions payable to the Comptroller or the Secretary of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation or that the applicant has provided for payment in a manner satisfactory to the unit responsible for collection. (Maryland Health Occupations Code Annotated, § 1-213).
The continuing education requirement does not apply to the first renewal after initial certification.
Sixteen hours of approved * Category I continuing education hours (CEH) relevant to the practice of respiratory care, earned during the 2-year period preceding the expiration of the license.
  1. Documentation of at least 16 hours of approved* continuing education in the 2 years preceding the application for reinstatement; OR
  2. If the license has not been renewed for more than 5 years and the applicant has not been practicing in another jurisdiction or country during at least 3 of the 5 years preceding the application, the applicant shall pass an examination approved by the Board, and meet all the requirements of licensure at the time the respiratory care practitioner applies for reinstatement.

*Approved continuing medical education means continuing education approved by the, Maryland/District of Columbia Society for Respiratory Care, American Association of Respiratory Care, Medical and Chirurgical Faculty of Maryland, or other organization or institution having requirements equivalent to the above organizations.

Questions regarding the approval of continuing education courses should be directed to the MD/DC Society for Respiratory Care at

Unless authorized to practice respiratory care, individuals may not use the abbreviation R.C.P. or any other words, letters, or symbols with the intent of representing him/herself as a respiratory care practitioner.
No. The Board does not license pulmonary function technologists. However, many of the duties the pulmonary function technologist performs are within the scope of practice of a respiratory care practitioner. Therefore, practicing as pulmonary function technologist could be considered practicing respiratory care without a license unless the individual is performing only basic pulmonary procedures. If you have questions about the pulmonary function technologist’s scope of practice, please contact the Board at 410-764-4777.
Respiratory Care Practitioners may accept verbal orders from authorized prescribers for procedures within the scope of practice of respiratory care. However, in the event that the authorized prescriber is not the person who would transmit the message, it is strongly recommended that a fax of a signed order be sent.
The practice of respiratory care includes the following: Professional application of techniques, equipment, and procedures involved in the administration of respiratory care such as: (a) Therapeutic and diagnostic gases (excluding general anesthesia), ... (COMAR

As long as the oxygen set-up does not involve any sort of clinical assessment, a respiratory therapist does not have to be involved in the delivery or set-up of oxygen.

Yes. A non-licensed individual may perform the set-up. This individual may also provide patient education ONLY IF the education does not include disease management specific information to the patient or any duty related the scope of practice of respiratory care.
Yes, but only if the RCP was licensed by the Maryland Board of Physicians to practice respiratory care on or before December 31, 2012, and if the duties included practicing polysomnography.
NO. Setup of CPAP and BPAP devices is not solely limited to Respiratory Care Practitioners or Registered Polysomnography Technicians. Equipment is typically provided to patients through Durable Medical Equipment (DME) Companies. DME Companies follow guidance from their regulating authorities and are not regulated by this body.


Initial Licenses $200.00
Reinstatements $200.00
Renewals* $176.00
Duplicate Licenses $25.00
Name Changes $25.00
*Includes a $26 assessment fee to fund the Maryland Health Care Commission (MHCC) as required by law (MD Code Annotated Health Occ. §1-209).