The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

2012 OPEN FORUM Abstracts


Ginger Weido, Sandra Gonzalez, Colleen Kori, Jennifer McGough, Earl Phillips, Amy Robinson; Respiratory Care, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Atlanta, GA

Background: A literature search conducted in 2007 addressing the use of career ladders for respiratory care professionals revealed only two articles published. Therefore, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta created a career ladder for respiratory care professionals (RCP) called the Career Advancement for Respiratory (CAR) based on a contributions system along with certain acceptable behaviors in order to advance. Since the program was to encompass three separate campuses with different attitudes and mindsets into one working career ladder, this model allows the therapist to customize their professional growth. Method: In 2011, an 18 question survey was developed by the CAR committee to assess the RCP’s understanding of the program along with level of satisfaction. Other goals of the survey included the perceived usefulness of the program for professional advancement and to measure changes in professional development such as obtaining advanced degrees and council involvement. The survey was electronically sent via an online survey tool to all 269 RCP’s within the three hospital systems. Additionally, Human Resources was contacted to find out if recruitment and retention has been affected by the CAR program. Results: The findings of our survey showed an increase in professional development and career advancement. Conversely, the survey did not show a perceived improvement in professional satisfaction or recruitment and retention. Conclusion: A career ladder can be instrumental in improving and engaging staff by increasing professional development and growth. Although the survey and feedback from the staff has shown an overall dissatisfaction with the career advancement program, the survey did show increased involvement and staff have remained engaged in ways that they have not previously been before. Despite the dissatisfaction of the program, our Human Resources Department reports it has not affected recruitment and retention of staff based on exit interviews. Ongoing development and changes to the program in 2012 will be based upon the needs identified in the survey. Sponsored Research - None