Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Crnas Battle-Tested

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Crnas Battle-Tested

Article excerpt

The proposal to authorize full practice authority for certified registered nurse anesthetists inside Veterans Affairs hospitals is about one thing: serving veterans. The notion that it somehow puts our armed forces members at risk ("Veterans Deserve Better Than the VA's Proposed Change for Anesthesia," July 5 letters) is absolutely untrue.

CRNAs are battle-tested providers. These advanced practice nurses are the primary anesthesia providers in austere combat theaters. They most commonly are the only anesthesia providers in the military's forward surgical teams. For example, one of the 2006 graduates from the classes I teach was the sole anesthesia provider for his unit fighting in Afghanistan.

If our care is substandard, as the anesthesiologists suggest, then why would CRNAs be approved to provide battlefield anesthesia in combat? …

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