Published Apr 30, 2003
Hello.. In the near future I plan to go to college and get my BSN. But at the very end of my education, I plan to be a CRNA because I am so fascinated by anesthesia, and also because of all of the other "benefits" of being a CRNA. My question is.. and I know nobody knows the answer for sure.. But now that the CRNA profession is becoming so well known ($$$ issues), is it safe to say that the CRNA salaries are going to continue to stay as high as they are now? I want to be a CRNA... And I could tell you 9 other people that I know PERSONALLY who want to be CRNA's also, basically just because of the $$$.
Do you see salaries decreasing in future years? I am just wondering, because if things go as planned, I should be a CRNA in around 7 years, and I dont know if there is going to be as great a need for them then as there is now.
Any thoughts? Thanks. :)
New CCU RN
Well are you doing it for the money?? If you are I highly suggest another field bc you aren't gonna last long enough in it to find out.
I think it would be very wise for anyone thinking about the profession to first go shadow a crna and a ICU RN; I think this fad of becoming a crna just for the money will phase out. First you have to become a RN which at the undergrad level is a very painful experience, I don't know of any RN's who said they enjoyed it, you just endure it. And from what I have heard of crna school just multiply the stress and sacrifice. Not to mention in between undergrad. and crna school you have to do at least one year of critical care as a nurse, although the average seems to be 3-5 for most who eventually get in crna school. Big commitment, and when most confront this reality they will find an easier way to make a living. I don't think most people who are not already nurses, who are talking about becoming a crna, have a clue to the difficulty and length of time required to become one. So do yourself a favor and check it out before jumping into it. And I also don't think people outside of nursing realize all the scut work that is involved with being a RN until and if you get in crna school. You have to do plenty of dirty work i.e., clean plenty of crap and body fluids, you are also not always trerated as a college educated professional. The irony of it is until you get in a crna program you will probably be frustrated with bedside nursing, it offers plenty of responsibiltiy but hardly any autonomy and did I mention you usually work your ass of as a bedside nurse with bad working conditions to booth. I am not trying to be negative but I think we who are already nurses owe it to be honest about the challenges to becoming a crna and the crap you must put up with as a bedside RN until you become a CRNA. Good luck and I wish you the best. And part of the reason I am big on stressing all aspects of becoming a crna is because I got into nursing to become one and it has taken a long time to finally get to the point were I may be starting crna school, I have been a RN for 5 years and can not say I have really enjoyed being a nurse, I have loved the learning experience of working in an academic setting, but cleaning shit and have to wait on patients and doctors gets old after awhile. If I had to do it again I would have tried to get into med school, although is a harder and longer goal you are at least treated like a professional from day one and are taught to be in charge and make decisions, you will not experience anything like that until you get into crna school.
Who knows how much money CRNAs will make in the future. Health care economics is the key and without a crystal ball it is impossible to predict. I do know a little about economics and understand the concept of supply and demand. Right now, incomes are high because there is a higher demand than supply. That could change with advances in medicine that would make surgery obsolete (unlikely, but it could happen), with increases in anesthesia providers (MDs, CRNAs, AAs). The simple answer is--we don't know.
As many have said before, don't even consider anesthesia if your only reason is the money. You will be disappointed, because it is a very difficult profession. From the educational requirements to actually administering anesthesia you will earn every penny you make.
If money is your driving force it's unlikely you will stick things out and get that far. Many of those at this point that say they wants to be a CRNA will fall by the wayside!
There are a lot easier ways to make the money that CRNAs make and more. If you have not even started your BSN and money is your driving factor, do something else other than nursing. I agree with Anthony, you really should shadow a CRNA and an ICU nurse in a large teaching hospital ICU to get a good idea of what life will really be like.
Lots of good advice, but geez...lighten up. Skrawberri didn't say he/she was in it JUST for the money. We all have to make a living. I bet there is not one nurse on here who would do it for free.
I did not mean to sound harsh in my earlier posting, I just interpreted your motivations to be based on the $$$$. That is at least the way your posting seemed.
Everyone has gone into great detail as to advice for you. I would listen to what they have to say. RN school, working as an ICU nurse, SRNA school, and then being a practicing CRNA are by no stretch easy fields to be in. If you want to make a good income, which there is nothing wrong with, but aren;t really intellectually interested or motivated by some other means ie) desire to help people in need... I'd suggest looking into a different path.
Everyone has mentioned shadowing an ICU nurse and a CRNA..it would be a great idea... you can see first hand what it is all about.
what other professions do you know of that it's easier to get the salary of a CRNA or more?
This is a sincere question. :)
i would like to say that i for one think money is a motivating factor. ONE motivating factor. the autonomy of anesthesia compared to bedside nursing is one also. as posted by others earlier, respect is a big motivator. if starting nursing just to go to anesthesia school is a goal, i respect that. if wanting to make a good living is important, i respect that also. but it must be mentioned that you have to look at the whole picture.
do you love to try and function under stressful circumstances? if not, look elsewhere for a job.
i for one hate sputum more than poop, guess what, alot of sputum in anesthesia, puke also.
do you want to be challenged practically to your maximum everyday you go to work? try anesthesia, if not go elsewhere.
are you comfortable with being responsible for another persons life every case? if so you'll thrive in anesthesia, if not look elsewhere.
there are many ways to be motivated, ppl always seek a balance in life and jobs. yeah i'll put up with X to get Y. can you say you would stay a nurse if pay decreased 50% ? i dont think i could. would i go to anesthesia school if i maid 50% more as a bedside nurse? definetly now that i know the other side, but i was happy at the bedside also.
am i excited to double or triple my salary as a crna, you bet your arse i am.
but the other factors involved make as much of a difference as the money.
for those ppl who want to get into anesthesia for the money..it is no guarantee you will get there, yeah you can make good grades, may have good reference letters work at some big shot trauma center and you know what, you may still not get in.
so....if you are not willing to work as a rn for a long time if necessary, endure people dying, dealing with poop, blood, puke, sputum, families, rude patients, angry patients, poor administrators, catty coworkers, then reconcider your career choice.
i come from a family of nurses, so i knew what i was getting into. if you dont know, shadow a regular bedside nurse, then an anesthetist.
Don't surveys show that nurses who make the most money (i.e. CRNA's, and other advanced practice nurses) also have the most job satisfaction?
As far as whether CRNA salaries will remain high, you might want to watch the AA issue. I believe someone mentioned on the AA thread that CRNA salaries have dropped in Georgia where there is an AA school and, consequently, more AA's working in that state.
In reference to pnurseuwm, law, particularly corporate law, finance, business, real estate investing, as well as pharmaceutical sales can average the yearly salaries of a CRNA. Also investing your time into education. I've seen salaries for principals in my area in the 100's. If you are still committed to nursing obtaining your PHD and becoming a vice president of a hospital or agency will yeild a high salary. To become a CRNA, I imagine, takes much determination and love of the profession. Lots of luck, Pokey
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