In the 1860's until around 1922 anaesthesia was a nursing speciality. MD's studied and researched mixtures such as ether and nitrous oxide but the principle's of application and the techniques were all nursing. The Yale Univeristy of Medicine hired nurse anesthetist Alice Hunt as an instructor of anesthesia. In addition to teaching medical students the principles of anesthesia she also authored a book in 1949 titled "Anaesthesia, Principles and Practices".
Just to keep the record strait a Certified Registerd Nurse Anesthetist or CRNA is the offical title for an advanced practice nurse who specializes in anesthesiology. A doctor who practices anaesthesia is called an anaesthesiologist.
Nurse anesthesia is an advanced nursing practice. A Nurse Anesthetist takes care of a patient’s anesthesia needs before, during, and after surgery or the delivery of a baby. Because Nurse Anesthetists are licensed as nurses, they provide services in conjunction with a qualified physician, surgeon, dentist, podiatrist, or anesthesiologist.
Nurse Anesthetists practice in a variety of settings in the private and public sector and in the US military, including traditional hospital operating rooms, ambulatory surgery centers, pain clinics, and physician’s offices. Some Nurse Anesthetists practice in conjunction with anesthesiologists, but in many states Nurse Anesthetists are independent practitioners. In most rural communities, they may be the only anesthesia providers.
CRNA EDUCATIONAL REQUIREMENTS
* Graduation from high school with coursework in math,
science and english.
* A Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing
* A license as a registered nurse
* A minimum of one year of acute care nursing experience
* A Masters in Nurse Anesthesiology
(Programs include 24 to 36 months of graduate course work, including both classroom and clinical experience.)
* Nurses must pass a national certification exam to become a CRNA.
* Recertification is required every two years. The
national certification board requires 40 units of continuing education every 2 years. A few states or facilities require up to 10 hours more per year and some states require a certain number of CE units for prescriptive authority.
American Associations of
Advanced Practice Nurses