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An Aggravated CRNA Responds To The AA Profession

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JCole View Drop Down
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Joined: 03 Oct 2007
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    Posted: 15 Aug 2009 at 2:49pm
An aggravated CRNA Responds To The AA PRofession

What is all this criticism by people who have never worked a day as an ICU nurse. If you did you would learn that ICU nursing is not about just turning and bathing patients but ventilator control, hemodynamic monitoring, control of vasoactive drips. Now lets be honest we can take an intelligent person and train them in anesthesia and they will do just fine.  Pre-op versed, robinul, op- propofol, sux, tube, gas there you go.  Anesthesia is 95% routine and 5 % emergency! Anesthesiologist Assistant's may be trained in anesthesia by reading a book and doing clinicals, but I can surely tell you that doing clinicals for nursing does not make you a seasoned nurse coming out of school. 3-5 years of experience as a charge nurse who's sole duty was to run to every code gives you the ability to handle emergencies and act with some independence when making a decision on the care of the coding patient. Now take that experience on top of the masters degree in anesthesia.

Tell me how the Anesthesiologist Assistant program has equipt you with that level of knowledge. Now totally exclude my masters degree and lets focus on my experience. I ran 70% of codes with no doc and stopped counting after 150+ in my 5 years of TICU.

Now I know all of you have excuses like I didn't take the MCAT, which is just a standardized test but if you AA's want that as your one up on me then fine, but lets compare everything else.  I do not doubt that many if not most AA's are very intelligent people and capable of providing great anesthesia 95% of the time and during minor situations, but when something goes terribly wrong do you keep quiet or call for help. Lets ask yourself why you call for help... Is it because you have to.. Yes partially... Is it because the situation is out of your hands... Absolutely. I know you are probably naive enough to think a CRNA would not call for help if needed, but in my independent practice I only called for help once from the other CRNA because I needed an extra set of hands to deliver blood to a patient when the surgeon cut the hepatic artery and couldn't find it.

So lets recap Nursing experience, charge nurse 150+ codes, master in medical pharmacology and physiology, soon to be phD in electrophysiology, 3 year CRNA program, 4960 clinical hours to an Anesthesiologist Assistant, with biological science background for some very few in a medical profession previously and 2.5 year program with no prior experience in emergency or critical care over long period of time or crisis management in ICU.  AA's are just not as experienced and not equivalent to CRNA's, you are great providers, but not the same or else during the 28 years or so of your existence you would have blossomed, but it hasn't until now. Like many of you I am tired of this AA vs CRNA argument and yes many CRNA's speak idiotically, but not completely false facts. I am happy with who I am and my profession as a CRNA and don't regret one day of it. I have worked in big urban hospitals where the majority of anesthesia providers were MDA's. I was allowed complete independence besides a pre-clinical evaluation and I had to dictate to my boss (MDA) but other than that my decisions were mine and that is why I chose to become a CRNA.

Yes, there is always going to be a political agenda between MDA, CRNA, and AA, but don't let that cloud the facts. If any of you can honestly compare your experience or knowledge and education level to mine please let me know.  Now why don't we all just get along and be happy with our choice to do what we want to do in life and quit fighting with each other. Sharing knowledge between each other would only better us, but instead there is so much animosity between us! Lets create a forum which is dedicated to education and life experiences regarding our professions.

When will CRNA's be required to be Doctors of Nurse Anesthesia Practice (DNAP's)? Why? Learn More HERE


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Edited by JCole - 15 Aug 2009 at 6:07pm
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