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Boom in CRNA interest...thoughts?


Anecdotally, it seems that there has been a boom in the interest of those who want to be CRNAs. This goes for both those who are nursing students as well as those who are thinking about career changes. I was at a party the other day and met this guy who was considering starting pre-reqs for nursing school so that he could eventually become a CRNA. He was currently working for Pepsi (sales of some sort) with a "business administration" major. As he put it, his main motivating factor was money.

Those I've met in school, maybe 50% (and it seems like 90% of males) want to go into anesthesia. I'm not maligning the profit incentive of wanting to become a CRNA. It just seems to me that wanting to make a lot of money isn't sufficient to be a good CRNA. I'm not saying all CRNA's need to be like mother theresa, but are you guys concerned? Will the profession be able to successfully screen out those who are actually competent and capable from those that just want to make money?


Specializes in critical care.

Well to begin with if you dont have the brains you wont make it through NS let alone CRNA school, and from what I understand CRNA school admission requirements are VERY high and it is very competitive. Those who will not be safe practitioners will most likely not make it in or through schooling. With that said I have heard ppl say it all the time, they want to go into nursing for the money... most ppl who say that havent spent one day in the classroom of a School of Nursing... once you go through school and come to the realization of what the job consists of you relize that NURSES DONT GET PAID ENOUGH. I dont think we have much to worry about :coollook:

Will the profession be able to successfully screen out those who are actually competent and capable from those that just want to make money?

Well, those who just want to make money will also have to be competent and capable in order to be accepted into and finish a CRNA program.

I'm not worried one bit...

Will the profession be able to successfully screen out those who are actually competent and capable from those that just want to make money?

They can and do.


Specializes in Pulmonary, MICU. Has 5 years experience.

The requirements to get in are pretty high, and will continue to raise as more people apply. Who cares if they just want money and aren't doing it altruistically to help people? As long as they are smart enough to do it effectively. I'd rather have a highly intelligent CRNA do my anesthesia that an altruistic idiot, honestly. I don't see a correlation between someone's competency and someone's drive to make more money. If they have the grades, the resume, and the test scores...then they are probably competent, regardless of whether they are there to help people or to make $150k annually.

yes to number 1

and no to number 2


Specializes in Ortho and Tele med/surg.

First, what's wrong with wanting to make a six figure salary? You know what really disturbs me? The nursing profession has more women than men, but why are most CRNA's men? What does that say about the profession? I have a tremendous amount of respect for the work that nurses do and they don't even get paid nearly enough for what they do on a daily basis. In order to become a CRNA, there are so many requirements and to get through any program. Become a CRNA requires many sacrifices not to mention the rigorious nature of the program. Honestly, there's nothing wrong with aspiring to make it to the top and making a great salary too.


Specializes in CRNA.

We had the coversation at work, and several of the guys who have been CRNAs for around 25-30 years, and are really good, said "I went into anesthesia for the money". I don't like the idea of money being the big attraction, but looking at these CRNAs, I can't see it was a problem.


Specializes in Ortho and Tele med/surg.

I guessed I never really thought about things that way. Maybe many of the hospitals out there did hire new grads in the past and they ended up failing the NCLEX. However, I know a lot of people with their license who still can't get a job. I'm definitely going to keep my head up. My ATT number should be coming this week. As soon as I get it, I will schedule myself to take the test. Thanks guys for your support.


Specializes in ICU, Informatics.

So there are six of us new grads starting in the ICU right now (4 guys 2 gals). A few days ago during orientation two of the guys and I were chit-chatting during a break and one of the guys said that his eventual plans were to become a CRNA, the other turned and said "hey me too". I also have plans to become a CRNA, but the little conversations like that, that I have had through my prereqs, nursing school, and now orientation are a little discurraging. At times it feels like wherever I go EVERYONE wants to be a CRNA. I'll admit that a lot of my interest is due to remuneration, but higher autonomy and respect, increased medical knowledge and application of skills, etc. also play a big role in my desire.

My question is, what is all of this demand going to do to the field of anesthesia? Increased student demand can increase academic supply which can lead to scarcity of jobs and less competitive pay. Can anyone speak authoritatively to the future demand in the labor market for CRNAs?

I also aspire to become a CRNA for all of the reasons listed above. I think it may be a littleearly to worry about market saturation, as not every person that says so in idle chit chat will not go the distance- @ least I hope not!


Specializes in CVICU, CCRN, now SRNA.

Why are most CRNA's men?

False. There's a much higher percentage of men in CRNA roles than percentage of men in nursing, but last time I checked women have a slight majority in the CRNA field.

What does that say about the profession?

There are proportionately more men throughout all advanced practice roles and management--this is true in other fields outside healthcare as well. I think this says more about men, women, and society than it does about the profession. Nursing as a profession is sorely lacking in its image, which is unfortunately rooted deeply in history.

The interest in anesthesia is not new. The people who are new to researching the field discover the competitiveness and somehow perceive this as new popularity when in fact it is just their slow realization. The AANA helps regulate the market through the number of programs and the number of students in each program... The popularity or number of applicants has no effect on the number of new CRNAs.

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