BREATHE-SD students begin coursework at HRMC

By Plainsman Staff
Posted 6/15/24

Respiratory care program students participate in classes at HRMC

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BREATHE-SD students begin coursework at HRMC


HURON — The first BREATH-SD respiratory care program students at Huron Regional Medial Center (HRMC) recently began classes at the hospital as part of a $1.5 million Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) grant received by HRMC in partnership with South Dakota State University (SDSU) and Northern Plains Health Network (NPHN) affiliate hospitals in Madison and Brookings.

Anna Tebay and Zoe Martin are the first BREATH-SD students in the program in Huron, which aims to bring respiratory therapy education and public health opportunities to rural facilities and the communities they serve. Both Tebay and Martin are natives of Huron and are excited at the opportunity to complete their professional training in their hometown. “I jumped at the opportunity when I heard the BREATHE-SD program was open to new students,” said Tebay. “I’m excited to get into training and on to a career.”

Respiratory care is a high-need clinical care profession, especially in rural areas, and boasts an array of career options. SDSU instructor for respiratory care at HRMC, Ranae Phinney, RRT, RPST, is instructing the students through the twelve-month program. “Throughout the summer, we feature an introduction to respiratory care in general with lecture, lab and clinicals. Once we get into our fall and spring semester, the students will have some opportunities to learn about respiratory care in additional settings such as in a clinic, sleep lab, pulmonary rehab, home medical and more.” Said Phinney. “Students will have a variety of opportunities in their clinicals to learn about all the different roles they can have in respiratory care.”

Mike Strubel, BSRT, RRT, respiratory therapy director at HRMC, is also an adjunct faculty member for SDSU, and will assist in providing the students with a diverse clinical experience as students will learn alongside respiratory therapists in the hospital and outpatient respiratory care setting, learning to perform pulmonary function tests, cardiac stress tests and more.

Grant funds are being used by SDSU and partner hospitals to hire additional faculty and purchase equipment so students can assimilate to the specialized and sometimes life-sustaining instruments in a hands-on environment. To learn more about the program, visit