We’re down to the final days of January, and you know what that means: time to celebrate National CRNA Week!
Interim Physicians proudly joins the healthcare community to honor over 59,000 CRNAs who safely provide over 50 million anesthetics yearly to patients across the United States. We thank you for delivering essential medical care across the nation.
A Lifeline for Rural Communities
In fact, CRNAs are the sole anesthesia providers for more than 80% of rural hospitals. And this responsibility extends well beyond scheduled surgeries. About 50% of rural hospitals use a “CRNA-only” model for their obstetric care, and CRNAs ensure that patients safely undergo trauma stabilization. They efficiently deliver pain management care without physician providers—many of whom are too far away for patients to safely travel to during a medical crisis.
These vital contributions resonate with us because, at Interim Physicians, we’re responsible for placing locum tenens CRNAs at healthcare facilities in need. And the cornerstone of our mission is to deliver healthcare where none may otherwise exist; CRNAs make that mission possible. And their expertise is a crucial component to expand access to medical care.
The “Original Anesthesia Experts”
What a fitting theme for this year’s CRNA Week. Last year, we witnessed several notable changes that cemented trust and helped CRNAs increase their impact on patient care in 2023:
- Maryland expanded their CRNA’s scope of practice to include the ability to order and prescribe medications.
- Michigan joined 19 other states who have opted out of the physician supervision requirement for CRNAs.
- Alabama signed a provision allowing CRNAs to provide anesthesia services with a physician, podiatrist, or dentist.
- The Alaska Board of Nursing eliminated specific administrative procedures as a requirement for CRNA licensure. Now, CRNAs and other advanced practice registered nurses are no longer required to submit “consultation and referral plans” to provide anesthesia services.
So, what’s on the horizon for 2023? Well, for starters, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that overall employment of nurse anesthetists, nurse midwives, and nurse practitioners will grow 40% from 2021-2031. And we’re happy to report that salaries are rising in tandem. In Medscape’s APRN Compensation Report 2022, 66% of CRNAs reported an income increase from 2020-2021 for an average annual salary of $225,000.
As we celebrate this week, we’re already looking forward to the exciting growth and resounding impact we’ll have the privilege of reporting next year.