What Does It Mean to Be Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist?

Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) are advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) who provide anesthesia-related care in many different health care settings, including hospital surgical suites and obstetrical delivery rooms, pain management centers, the offices of podiatrists, ophthalmologists, and plastic surgeons, and much more.

P-W-COM94257-APP-Week_KamannNicole Kamann, a CRNA at Miami Valley Hospital, explains more about what it means to be a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist:


What is the role of a certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA)?

Nurse anesthetists provide anesthesia and related care before, during, and after surgical, therapeutic, diagnostic, and obstetrical procedures. They also provide pain management and emergency services, such as airway management.  

How is the care provided by a certified registered nurse anesthetist unique?

Nurse anesthetists first arose during the Civil War to give anesthesia to wounded soldiers. These days, CRNAs are the main providers of anesthesia in rural and medically underserved regions of the United States, and for the men and women in the U.S. Armed Forces. CRNAs use their high level of training combined with the compassion learned from taking care of patients at the bedside to provide a high level of comprehensive anesthetic care. 

How do CRNAs improve access to care for Premier Health patients?

One anesthesiologist can supervise three to four CRNAs at a given time. By having CRNAs, more patients have access to quality anesthetic care for surgeries and procedures. CRNAs are also the primary providers for obstetrics at Miami Valley Hospital. 

What training does it take to become a certified registered nurse anesthetist?

CRNAs need a bachelor’s of science in nursing and at least a year of experience, most have three to five years of experience, in a critical care setting (such as the ICU) to apply to a nurse anesthesia program. We then undergo a rigorous didactic and clinical training to receive a master’s or doctorate degree in nurse anesthesia. After achieving the required degrees, graduates must then take a national licensure exam to practice.

What makes a great certified registered nurse anesthetist?

A great CRNA has excellent critical thinking skills, attention to detail, calm logic and quick action in an emergency, and a daily desire to continually learn and improve.