What Do Nurse Anesthetists Do (including Their Typical Day At Work)

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Job Description, Daily Responsibilities, and Work Life.

Job Description

Nurse Anesthetists administer anesthesia, monitor patient’s vital signs, and oversee patient recovery from anesthesia. May assist anesthesiologists, surgeons, other physicians, or dentists. Must be registered nurses who have specialized graduate education. They also manage patients’ airway or pulmonary status, using techniques such as endotracheal intubation, mechanical ventilation, pharmacological support, respiratory therapy, and extubation.

Other tasks include:

  • Select, prepare, or use equipment, monitors, supplies, or drugs for the administration of anesthetics.
  • Select, order, or administer anesthetics, adjuvant drugs, accessory drugs, fluids or blood products as necessary.
  • Monitor patients’ responses, including skin color, pupil dilation, pulse, heart rate, blood pressure, respiration, ventilation, or urine output, using invasive and noninvasive techniques.
  • Perform pre-anesthetic screenings, including physical evaluations and patient interviews, and document results.
  • Respond to emergency situations by providing airway management, administering emergency fluids or drugs, or using basic or advanced cardiac life support techniques.
  • Develop anesthesia care plans.

We asked Nurse Anesthetists how satisfied they are with their job. Here is what they said.

Job satisfaction

74%

How meaningful is this job

82%


74% of them said they were satisfied with their job and 82% said they find that their job makes the world a better place or helps to make someone else’s life better.



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Typical Day At Work

On a daily basis, Nurse Anesthetists perform pre-anesthetic screenings, including physical evaluations and patient interviews, and document results. They assess patients’ medical histories to predict anesthesia response.

A typical day for a Nurse Anesthetist will also include:

  • Obtain informed consent from patients for anesthesia procedures.
  • Select and prescribe post-anesthesia medications or treatments to patients.
  • Select, order, or administer pre-anesthetic medications.
  • Develop anesthesia care plans.
  • Manage patients’ airway or pulmonary status, using techniques such as endotracheal intubation, mechanical ventilation, pharmacological support, respiratory therapy, and extubation.

We asked some Nurse Anesthetists a few questions to find out what else does their work day look like. Here is what we found.

Do you have telephone conversations everyday in this job?58% said yes
How important is it to work in a team in this job?71% said very important
Do you have group discussions everyday in this job?100% said yes
Do you talk or work with customers everyday in this job?48% said yes
Do you have to deal with angry customers everyday in this job?13% said yes
Do you have to make decisions everyday in this job?71% said yes

Other responsibilities

Besides their typical day, Nurse Anesthetists also insert arterial catheters or perform arterial punctures to obtain arterial blood samples. They may also read current literature, talk with colleagues, and participate in professional organizations or conferences to keep abreast of developments in nursing.

On a weekly to monthly basis, Nurse Anesthetists Perform or manage regional anesthetic techniques, such as local, spinal, epidural, caudal, nerve blocks and intravenous blocks. They might also Respond to emergency situations by providing airway management, administering emergency fluids or drugs, or using basic or advanced cardiac life support techniques.

In addition, they Request anesthesia equipment repairs, adjustments, or safety tests.

Although specific duties may vary, many of them Instruct nurses, residents, interns, students, or other staff on topics such as anesthetic techniques, pain management and emergency responses.

To some Nurse Anesthetists, it is also their responsibility to Prepare prescribed solutions and administer local, intravenous, spinal, or other anesthetics, following specified methods and procedures.


Working life

Working hours

More than 40 hours per week

Working schedule

Regular schedule like a 9 to 5

In a typical work week as a Nurse Anesthetist, you can expect to work more than 40 hours per week.

Do Nurse Anesthetists work in an office-style work environment?

Every day
100%


Never
0%


Do Nurse Anesthetists work outdoors?

Never
100%


Once a year
0%



Is this right for me

Best personality for this career

The Thinkers and The Builders

People who are suitable for this job tends to like working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. They like searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally..

They also like work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They like working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery.

You can read more about these career personality types here.




Learn more about Nurse Anesthetists

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Related to Nurse Anesthetists Job Description

Nurse Anesthetists job description, what do Nurse Anesthetists do, typical day for Nurse Anesthetists, what is it like to work as a Nurse Anesthetist, how many hours do Nurse Anesthetists work, day to day work of a Nurse Anesthetist

Additional resources

http://www.bls.gov/OOH/healthcare/nurse-anesthetists-nurse-midwives-and-nurse-practitioners.htm
http://www.aana.com/Pages/default.aspx
http://nursingworld.org/
http://www.aacn.nche.edu/


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