All You Need to Know About Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist

06/30, 2023 - Sohini

If you are a nurse and want to advance your career and earn more money, becoming a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) might be a good option for you. CRNAs are specialized nurses. They have special training and certification to give anesthesia to patients before, during, and after surgery or other procedures. They work with doctors, surgeons, and other healthcare professionals to ensure the safety and comfort of patients.


Online certifications offer numerous benefits for Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) seeking to enhance their skills and expand their professional horizons. Learntastic provides a convenient and flexible option for CRNAs to pursue advanced certifications. Let’s understand more about Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist and the online certifications.


The benefits of choosing online certifications include:

  • the ability to learn at one's own pace

  • access to comprehensive study materials

  • interactive modules

  • the convenience of studying from anywhere.


Learntastic's online platform ensures CRNAs can balance their work and personal commitments. All this while gaining valuable knowledge and expertise. With Learntastic, CRNAs can:

  • enhance their professional development

  • stay updated with the latest industry standards

  • broaden their career opportunities within the field of anesthesia


Overview of CRNA Education Requirement and Training


To become a CRNA, you must have:

  • a BSN degree in nursing or an associated field

  • an existing license as a registered nurse (RN)

  • at least one year of experience in an acute care setting such as an intensive care unit (ICU) or an emergency room (ER)


Then, you need to apply to an accredited nurse anesthesia program that lasts between 24 and 36 months. Through the program, you will learn about:

  • anatomy

  • physiology

  • pharmacology

  • pathophysiology

  • anesthesia techniques


You will also complete more than 2,000 hours of supervised clinical experience. This takes place in various settings such as hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers, and pain clinics. After graduating from the program, you need to pass the National Certification Examination (NCE) administered by the National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists (NBCRNA). Once you pass the exam, you can use the title of CRNA and practice in any state.


CRNAs vs. Anesthesiologists: Understanding the Differences


CRNAs and anesthesiologists are both healthcare professionals who provide anesthesia services to patients. However, there are some differences between them in terms of education, training, scope of practice, and salary.


Anesthesiologists are doctors. They have completed four years of medical school and four years of residency in anesthesiology. They can specialize in different areas. Such as cardiac anesthesia, pediatric anesthesia , or pain management. They can also supervise or collaborate with CRNAs or other anesthesia providers. CRNAs are nurses. They have completed a bachelor's degree in nursing or a related field, a master's degree or a doctorate in nurse anesthesia, and a national certification exam. They can provide anesthesia individually and independently or under the supervision of an expert anesthesiologist or physician. They can also administer any type of anesthesia that an anesthesiologist can.

However, the salary for both professions can vary on the basis of the following factors such as:

  • location

  • experience

  • education level

  • employer


Scope of Practice: Roles and Responsibilities of CRNAs


CRNAs have a wide range of roles and responsibilities in providing anesthesia care to patients. Some of their duties include:


  • Performing a pre-anesthetic assessment and evaluation of the:

    • patient's medical history

    • physical condition

    • allergies

    • medications

    • preferences and any other medical ailments


  • Developing and implementing an individualized plan of anesthesia care. It is based on the patient's needs and the type of procedure


  • Selecting and administering the appropriate drugs and fluids to induce and maintain anesthesia


  • Monitoring the patient's:

    • vital signs

    • oxygen levels

    • blood pressure

    • heart rate

    • other parameters during the procedure


  • Adjusting the level of anesthesia as needed according to the patient's response and the surgical situation


  • Providing pain relief and sedation during the recovery period


  • Educating the patient and family about post-operative care and potential complications


  • Documenting all aspects of anesthesia care in the medical record


  • Participating in quality improvement and research activities related to anesthesia




Becoming a CRNA is a rewarding career choice for nurses. Especially those who want to advance their skills and knowledge in anesthesia care. CRNAs are highly trained and qualified professionals. They play a vital role in ensuring the safety and comfort of patients undergoing surgery or other procedures. If you are interested in becoming a CRNA, you can enroll in an online certification program for nurses from Learntastic. It can help you prepare for the exam and boost your resume.


Learntastic is a leading provider of online education for nurses. It offers flexible schedules, affordable tuition fees, and expert instructors. To learn more about Learntastic's online certification program for nurses, visit our website or contact us today.