I am currently an undergrad at UF and am completely confused as to what I want to do after college...I came in thinking that I wanted to be a medical examiner/pathologist, but when I went and shadowed one for a day I realized I did not want to work with dead people for the rest of my life..it would just be too depressing. Then someone mentioned to me the field of CRNA (which I had never even heard of until then, and most people I talk to have never even heard of it!!) Anyways, I then found out that both of the parents of a friend are CRNAs and love the job..so far all the CRNAs I have talked to have not really had a negative thing to say about the field. So I started to take pre-req classes for nursing instead of pre-med..then this summer decided I wanted to major in finance, took a financial accounting class and loved it, but all my friends do not see me as being happy in the business field..so once again I am considering CRNA or going to medical school. I have several questions:
I know one CRNA who wishes that she had gone to medical school rather than nursing...does anyone else have this regret? I really do not know if I want to go to school for the next 10-12 years and be in debt for the next 30 because of the schooling, lol.
I noticed that someone asked if someone was a nurse anesthetist student or an Anesthesia Assistant student? What is the difference between the two?
what exactly does that all entail? does it have to be in a hospital or could your year of nursing exp be done at like an outpatient surgery clinic, or whatever they are called?
what exactly is this field and how would you get started in this?
So far those are all my questions, but I am sure I can come up with plenty more!
Aug 13, '03
I can answer a couple of your questions:
An SRNA (student nurse anesthetist) is a Registered Nurse who is currently enrolled in a program to become a CRNA. To become a CRNA, you must be an RN, have a bachelor's degree (not necessarily in nursing) and have acute care experience as an RN. An anesthesiologist assistant is an individual who has a bachelor's degree (pretty much in any field...it does not have to be medically related) who also has two years of training in anesthesia. The AA does not necessarily have any experience whatsoever in the medical field. Those are the differences in education and training. As far the actual work done by a CRNA and an AA, there is also a difference. A CRNA is allowed to provide total anesthesia care before, during, and after surgery. Depending on the state, the CRNA may be supervised by an anesthesiologist, a surgeon, or no one at all. An AA must practice under the license of an anesthesiologist and must be directly supervised by him or her.
As far as ICU experience, the only place I know have that has an intensive care unit is a hospital. An outpatient sugery center could offer you experience in PACU (post-anesthesia care unit) but probably not the high-acuity type of patient care needed for CRNA school. Hope this helps.
Aug 13, '03
Well go play golf and relax while your thinking about it.
Aug 13, '03
I second that! FORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Aug 14, '03
The best thing you can do is utilize the career guidance resources at your university. Pronto.
Making career decisions based on the advice of friends who can't see you in the business field, or the fact that you know some CRNAs that are satisfied, is not good judgment.
Sure, there are some CRNAs that wish they had gone to medical school. There are veterinarians, lawyers, waitresses, and peace corps volunteers who feel the same way. What is the real question?
The CRNA path is a long road, and for most of us, it is also an expensive one. Add up a 4 year baccalaureate degree, at least a year or two of work in a hospital (no, definitely not a clinic), at least 2 years of graduate school.
Visit your career center. You would be amazed by the whiz-bang aptitude tests they have. They can be uncannily accurate.
Aug 14, '03
I have been to the career resource center and talked to someone, but he was not a big help at all. I spent about an hour there a day before looking through the books, trying to get an idea of different careers out there. The guy I talked to wanted to draw my decision out into a semester long thing..and I didn't want to have to wait that long. I've taken the career placement tests and stuff before in High school and my results, as well as a lot of others that I know, came out to be ridiculous responses, such as, truck driver, hoter cleaner, etc etc. Sorry, but I have highter goals than that, lol.