CRNA – Clinical Practice Guidelines

As a CRNA you are bound to the statues, regulation and institutional policies set forth by your state. While there may be slight variations to what a CRNA is legally able to perform, the fundamental clinical practice guidelines are relatively universal throughout the United States. While you’ll learn specific details regarding your specific abilities and scope of practice throughout training, the following information is considered universally applicable to all current CRNAs.

The Four Categories of CRNA Anesthesia Administration

There are four categories in which a CRNA is capable of administering anesthesia. These include:

  1. Pre-Anesthetic Preparation and Evaluation – In this category, a CRNA works with the patient to prepare them for anesthesia by reviewing their medical history and discussing various concerns with the patient. It’s typically with this evaluation and preparation the anesthesiologist is able to cultivate an effective – and safe – treatment plan.
  2. Anesthesia Induction, Maintenance and Emergence – Throughout this category, a CRNA works with the medical team to either provide the anesthesia to the patient, maintain the dose of anesthesia in order to keep the patient unconscious/pain-free as well as administer drugs to bring the patient back to consciousness according to the requirements set forth by your facility and state.
  3. Post-Anesthesia Care – A CRNA may also be responsible for caring for the patient after they have been revived from anesthesia.
  4. Perianesthetic and Clinical Support – As a CRNA you may work with a wide array of medical professionals with the overall goal of treating a patient before surgery, during and throughout recovery.

Highlights of CRNA Scope of Practice

The following highlights should not be considered the only limitations of a CRNA scope of practice. Rather, these are general highlights you should expect to perform throughout your shift as a CRNA:

Perform assessments and document patient evaluations, which includes scheduling consultations, determining appropriate preanesthetic medications and obtaining a signed consent form from patients prior to administering the anesthesia medication.
Cultivating an anesthetic plan based upon patient medical history and surgical treatments.
Selecting the ideal mode of anesthesia, such as general, local, regional and intravenous administration of medication.
Selecting, administering and monitoring patient monitoring modalities, which are used to collect and review physiological data from patients.
Discharge patients from a post-anesthesia care center, and providing follow-up evaluations to determine if there are any complications or side-effects related to anesthesia.
Overseeing the development of pain relief therapy in post-anesthesia patients to help manage pain levels while ensuring patients are hydrated and treated to sustain comfort and safety.

To learn more about CRNA clinical practice, visit CRNA Schools Today.