Respiratory Compromise

is a potentially life threatening state of unstable respiratory health: It is a gradual, subtle imbalance in patient response that encompasses respiratory failure and arrest, with symptoms that manifest differently in each patient. 

When not diagnosed and treated as early as possible, consequences can be fatal.

  • Respiratory Compromise is the second leading avoidable patient safety issue in the U.S.
  • It is the fifth top condition leading to increasing hospital costs and third-most rapidly increasing hospital inpatient cost in the United States
  • More than 60 percent of arrests brought on by respiratory compromise are potentially avoidable. 
  • 13.79 of every 1,000 hospitalized patients experience respiratory failure following surgery, according to a Healthgrades survey
  • $7.8 billion was spent on Respiratory Compromise in U.S. hospitals in 2007, and costs are growing, according to the DHHS Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
  • Respiratory compromise increases a patient’s mortality rate by over 30%, and increase ICU stays by almost 50% 

Complications from Respiratory Compromise are increasing rapidly across the clinical spectrum, in part due to expanded use of opioids combined with the lack of standardized guidelines among medical specialties.

While Respiratory Compromise prevents problems that are often serious and potentially life-threatening, they are almost always preventable with the proper tools and approach. Appropriate patient monitoring and therapeutic strategies are necessary for early recognition, intervention and treatment.

The Respiratory Compromise Institute (RCI) is an alliance of 12 professional medical societies and interested healthcare providers that have mobilized to define the state of Respiratory Compromise and educate the medical community so that the onset of respiratory compromise can be detected to mitigate respiratory failure and arrest.  

Together, we aim to elevate awareness surrounding this respiratory state and support the use of monitoring tools and treatments already available, so healthcare professionals can help reduce the incidence of Respiratory Compromise.


13.79 per 1,000 of hospitalized Medicare patients experience respiratory failure following surgery

According to a recent Healthgrades study


Respiratory compromise increases patient mortality rates over 30% and increases hospital and ICU stays by almost 50%


$7.8 billion was spent on respiratory compromise in US hospitals in 2007, and costs are going up

According to the DHHS Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality


Parents and Experts Speak Out

An explanation or preview of the video at left appears here. If there are other videos in the series, you can link to them here or here. If you have a YouTube channel (and you should) let’s link to it here as well!

See More Videos