Washington, DC Respiratory Therapist Salaries

In spite of its small size, DC holds 14 hospitals for the general public and two military hospitals, all of which have respiratory therapists on staff.

The DC Department of Health’s Board of Respiratory Care regulates RT licensing and practice. The five-member board consists of three respiratory therapists licensed in DC, one physician and one public member. They also establish professional standards, evaluate applicant qualifications and administer exams.

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According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics there were 290 actively employed RTs in DC in 2013.

The median annual salary for all RTs in the District is reported to be $61,840, which is higher than the national annual median salary of $57,880.

Salaries are affected by education and experience. RTs with bachelor’s or master’s degrees can expect to begin at higher salaries than those with only an associate’s degree.

Although many new RTs start work with a CRT credential, those who take additional coursework and pass the RRT exam are rewarded with higher salaries, better promotional chances and greater prestige.

Salary differences between CRTs and RRTs in DC are as follows:


  • Lowest annual salary – $51,348
  • Median annual salary – $62,296
  • Highest annual salary – $73,985


  • Lowest annual salary – $56,921
  • Median annual salary – $67,717
  • Highest annual salary – $78,790

The table below provides 2013 Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) salary information for Respiratory Therapists in DC:

Area Name
Annual Median Salary
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria DC-VA-MD-WV Metropolitan Division
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria DC-VA-MD-WV