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Respiratory Therapy Advisory Board
Continuing Education: Questions and Answers

1. When must I have the required number of continued competency activity completed in order to renew my license?

With the renewal of licensure, you will be required to sign an attestation on your renewal form that you have completed 20 hours of continued competency activity requirements. Falsification on the renewal form is a violation of law and may subject you to disciplinary action.

2. Am I required to send in evidence of my continued competency activity hours at the time I renew?

No. The Board will randomly select licensees for a post-renewal audit. If selected, you would be notified by mail that documentation is required and given a time frame within which to comply.

3. When do the continuing competency requirements begin?

Hours must be obtained within the two years between renewals. For example, if your license expires on June 30 and you renew on June 15, you must have your hours completed during the two years immediately after your most recent renewal and June 15.

4. Who maintains the required documents for verification of continued competency activities?

It is the licensee’s responsibility to maintain the certificates and any other continued competency forms or records for four years following renewal in 2005 and thereafter. Do not send forms or documents to the Board of Medicine unless requested to do so.

5. How many hours of continuing education are required?

Twenty hours of continuing respiratory therapy education as approved and documented by a sponsor recognized by the AARC.

6. Where do I obtain the instructions and forms for continuing competency requirements?

You may download copies from the Board’s website. Records may be maintained electronically, but copies of documentation and forms will be necessary if a respiratory care practitioner is audited following a renewal cycle. Forms may also be copied.

7. What if I am newly licensed? Do I still have to obtain the full 20 hours of continuing education?

No. There is an exemption for the first biennial renewal following your initial licensure in Virginia.

8. What if I become ill or incapacitated and unable to complete my continued competency requirements prior to renewal?

A written request from the respiratory therapist prior to the renewal date explaining the circumstances and requesting an extension or exemption is necessary for the Board’s consideration. The Board may grant an extension of up to one year or an exemption for all or part of the required hours for the biennium.

9. What if I am now retired and don’t want to obtain continuing competency hours but don’t want to give up my license?

You may request an inactive license from the Board, beginning with your next renewal. It is important to note that holding an inactive license does not authorize you to engage in the practice of respiratory therapy in Virginia. If you intend to practice at all in Virginia, even on a part-time or non-compensatory basis, you must retain your active license.

10. What if I take inactive licensure status and later decide to reactivate?

To reactivate an inactive license, the licensee must pay the difference between the current fee for inactive licensure and the renewal fee for active licensure, provide documentation of 10 hours of continuing education for each year in which the license has been inactive, not to exceed three years and evidence of competency to return to active practice.