RT Grad Turns Degree Into Business
Jul 18, 2019
"Never settle or do the bare minimum," says Rachel Thomas, a 2002 Concorde-Memphis Respiratory Therapist alumna. "Shine in whatever career you choose!" Thomas has certainly taken her own advice. Today, she owns and operates RT Medical, LLC out of Mt. Juliet, Tenn. According to her website, RT Medical is a home-care organization dedicated to providing comprehensive care to patients recovering from operations or combating various illnesses. "We currently manage 100 patients on invasive ventilator support in their homes," Thomas said. "We set up and educate many oxygen patients, tracheostomy patients and clinical respiratory patients for home care. Our patients range from neonatal to geriatric." She and her team are convinced that patients are happier and progress faster when they can recover in the comfort and familiar surroundings of their home. They work directly with physicians and/or discharge planners to ensure smooth transitions from hospital care to home care. After spending a few years as a respiratory therapist at Delta Medical Center of Memphis and Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tenn., she moved to Mt. Juliet in Nov. 2003 and started RT Medical in 2005 with her husband, Bruce, two kids, Presley and Rhett, and their three dogs. "I never thought I wanted to own a business," Thomas said. "I just loved taking care of home ventilator patients. Next thing I knew, I had 20 employees and referrals galore!" Being a business owner doesn't come without its challenges, however. Thomas says constant insurance changes and reimbursement cuts keep her and her team on their toes.