The role of the Nurse Anesthetist is vital to healthcare in Texas. Remember that CRNAs work as independent providers and are independently licensed and legally responsible and accountable for their own practices in Texas. They may practice as private practitioners on the basis of their own clinical privileges within hospitals or surgicenters; they may independently contract for the provision of anesthesia services in facilities; or they may be employed by a hospital, surgical center, a group of MDs, or a surgeon.
Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) are highly educated, well-trained advanced practice
registered nurses (APRNs). They are educated and trained to deliver anesthesia care regardless of whether
an anesthesiologist is involved. Prior to entering a graduate nurse anesthesia program, CRNAs, at a minimum, must hold a bachelor’s degree, be a licensed registered nurse and have at least one
year of patient care experience in an acute care setting. Before beginning a nurse anesthesia program, the
candidate acquires extensive experience in medical, surgical, or coronary intensive care units or postanesthesia care. From the commencement of their nursing education to graduation from a master’s or doctoral program in nurse anesthesia, CRNAs have completed seven to eight years of advanced education and preparation. CRNAs are required to obtain a minimum of 6,000 anesthesia clinical hours of patient care experience.