As a registered nurse, you've likely gained valuable health care experience in a variety of specialties and settings. This may have exposed you to the variety of advanced nursing professions that are available to nurses who are willing to take the next step in their education. If you are interested in nursing research, advanced patient care, and pharmacology, nurse anesthesia may be the right nursing specialty for you. With a Bachelor's degree in nursing, you already have much of the background and basic training you need to get started.
To become a nurse anesthetist, you need an advanced degree in nursing. You may choose from a Master's degree or a doctoral degree, depending upon which options are available to you. This degree can give you experience and theoretical knowledge in many aspects of nurse anesthesia. With the clinical experience you gain in this type of program, you may be able to provide specialized care to patients all over New Jersey.
Becoming a nurse anesthetist in New Jersey may significantly increase your scope of practice and increase the number of procedures you can carry out in your nursing career. You may administer oral and IV medications, administer injections, or put patients under general anesthesia. If you're interested in learning more about what this career entails and what you can study, contact the schools that offer CRNA programs in New Jersey now.
To start working toward a rewarding career in anesthesia, you have to meet the stringent educational requirements of this field. To qualify for acceptance to a CRNA program, you need a Bachelor's degree in nursing. This degree must have been obtained at an accredited school, and furthermore, you should have kept a 3.0 GPA or higher while earning this degree. Most schools in New Jersey require at least one year of full-time nursing experience. Some schools go further and require at least one year of experience in a critical care or emergency care setting. Preparing ahead of time to meet these requirements can help you increase your chances of acceptance.
You need to take Master's-level courses in many different areas of nursing to get the skills and knowledge required for an advanced nursing career. To start your curriculum, you may take essential courses like Theoretical Foundations in Advanced Nursing, Advanced Pharmacology for Nurse Anesthesia, Advanced Health Assessment, and Introduction to Nurse Anesthesia Practice. This prepares you for high-level courses that aggressively build your anesthesia skill set. Courses in this category include Nurse Anesthesia Practice, Gross Anatomical Dissection, Biophysics for Nurse Anesthesia, Nurse Anesthesia Clinical Internship, and Health Policy & Finance. Though many of your courses may take place in the classroom, clinical experience is also a huge part of this degree. Throughout your two to four years in school, plan on obtaining at least 550 hours of clinical experience.
You may begin applying for financial aid after you have been officially accepted to a nurse anesthesia program. The New Jersey State Nurses Association runs the Nursing Scholarship Program, which provides funds for graduate-level nursing students. Scholarships of at least $2,000 each are provided by the New Jersey Hospital Association to graduate students. Consider also contacting the New Jersey League for Nursing, which offers scholarships to New Jersey residents.
Getting your advanced degree is the first step to becoming a nurse anesthetist. You may then begin the process of becoming licensed in the state of New Jersey. The National Board of Certification & Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists offers certification at the national level. You must accomplish this before getting licensure in New Jersey. Once you have become a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist, you must recertify every two years. Your state license comes from the State of New Jersey Board of Nursing. You must submit proof of your passing exam score, your school transcript, and your completed advanced practice application. This allows you to practice in the state of New Jersey.
Given how important nurse anesthetists are in many different practice settings, it should come as no surprise that the job outlook is positive for CRNAs in New Jersey. Between 2012 and 2022, O*Net expects job openings for New Jersey nurse anesthetists to increase by 20%. Your salary in this field may vary quite a bit depending on your practice setting and your education level. However, generally speaking, becoming a nurse anesthetist can increase your earning potential. The average salary for a CRNA is $151,100 per year (O*Net, 2013).
Nurse anesthesia can be an excellent field for nurses that want to change the field of health care in New Jersey. Your education may encourage other nurses to advance their knowledge and understanding of evidence-based care. As a nurse anesthetist, your extensive knowledge of care standards may help you become a leader in the nursing community of New Jersey. As you begin your career, consider joining the New Jersey Association of Nurse Anesthetists to network with other nursing professionals and learn about continuing education opportunities in your area.
Now that you know more about the field of nurse anesthesia, you may be ready to advance your education. Use our schools list to contact CRNA schools in New Jersey, so you can get details about applying to and completing a CRNA program.