Nurse Anesthetist Job Description

Nurse anesthetists, more commonly referred to as CRNAs (Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists), are experts in anesthesia who have completed a degree and clinical experience along with a certification process that has prepared them for surgical, obstetric, and diagnostic procedures.

person wearing blue knit cap and white face mask

Nurse anesthetists are advanced practice registered nurses who have completed a master's or doctoral level education and clinical training program that has prepared them to administer anesthesia for surgical, obstetric, and diagnostic procedures.


These advanced practice nurses work in operating rooms or other health care facilities where they assist physicians with the provision of anesthesia during operations and other procedures. They also administer medications, monitor anesthesia equipment, and prepare the patient for surgery.


Nurse anesthetists participate in every aspect of the care of surgical patients from pre-operative evaluation to post-operative care. Their responsibilities include:

  • Preparing patients for surgery by administering medications, monitoring the patient's vital signs and administering fluids.
  • Working with physicians in developing and implementing anesthesia plans for their patients.
  • Assisting the physician during surgery by administering medications, monitoring equipment, assisting in intubations and applying oxygen.
  • Preparing patients for diagnostic procedures by administering medications, monitoring the patient's vital signs and providing pre-procedure instructions.
  • Educating surgical patients and their families on anesthesia care and answering questions throughout the course of their treatment.
  • Working with team members to assemble pre-packaged medical kits for emergency situations, as well as maintaining anesthesia equipment and supplies.
  • Providing post-operative evaluation of a patient's condition and continued patient education.
  • Maintaining proper patient records and reporting changes in a patient's condition to physicians.
  • Encouraging patients to report any unusual symptoms or reactions to medications as well as responding to questions from patients and providing support following surgery.


Nurse anesthetists must complete at least a master's level program that is accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (COA) in order to practice.


Some states may require nurse anesthetists to be licensed.


Nurse anesthetists typically work full time schedules in hospitals and outpatient centers, providing anesthesia services to patients and their surgeons. They often work long hours during busy times of the day, such as surgeries and deliveries.


Nurse anesthetists can also conduct research, teach or lecture in a variety of settings and generally work for themselves by establishing their own independent practice.

Statistics on Nurse Anesthetists


  • 2020 Median Pay: $117,670 per year, $56.57 per hour.
  • Number of jobs in 2019: 263,400
  • Employment Change, 2019-29: 117,700
  • Job Outlook, 2019-29: 45% (Much faster than average)

Articles On Nurse Anesthetists


How to Become a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA)

If you're a Registered Nurse (RN) looking for more autonomy working with patients in an operating room, intensive care unit, or surgical facility, then becoming a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) might be the perfect job for you. (


What is a Nurse Anesthetist?

Readers can explore our guide for information on the nurse anesthetist occupation, including education, experience, and licensing requirements. (


Nurse Anesthetists (


Nurse anesthetist - Wikipedia (


Nurse Anesthetist

Nurse anesthetists can use a number of intravenous drugs and inhaled gasses to administer general or regional anesthesia, so... (


Nurse Anesthetist

A nurse anesthetist is an advanced nurse who administers anesthetics in all practice settings and provides care for all operations or procedures. (


Nurse Anesthetists, Nurse Midwives, and Nurse Practitioners: Occupational Outlook Handbook: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Nurse anesthetists, nurse midwives, and nurse practitioners coordinate patient care and may provide primary and specialty healthcare. (


Nurse Anesthetists at My Next Move (


Become A CRNA

The AANA would like elementary, high school, and college students to consider nursing and becoming a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNA) as a career choice. (

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