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How do you become a CRNA?

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Quick Answer

To become a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist, earn an undergraduate degree in nursing or a related field, hold a valid Registered Nurse state license, and work in an acute care environment. Aspiring CRNAs must complete an accredited CRNA training program and subsequent national examination to obtain a CRNA license.

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Full Answer

  1. Complete an undergraduate degree program

    Enroll and graduate from an undergraduate degree program in nursing or a related field.

  2. Become a Registered Nurse

    After successfully completing your degree program, apply for and pass the Registered Nurse license examination overseen by your state board of nursing. Because RN license requirements vary by state, contact your local board of nursing for eligibility and licensing requirements.

  3. Work as an RN

    Upon gaining an RN license, secure work in an acute care facility, such as in a hospital emergency room or ICU department.

  4. Enroll in a CRNA training program

    After you've worked a minimum of one year in an acute care environment, enroll in a training program accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs.

  5. Pass the certification exam

    Upon successful completion of an accredited nurse anesthesia training program, take and pass the national certification examination offered by the National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists.

  6. Apply for state license

    Submit an application for a CRNA license with your state board of licensing. Be prepared to provide information such as training programs, examination scores and a current RN license number. Pay the licensing fee.

  7. Complete continuing education requirements

    All states require licensed CRNAs to complete a set amount of continuing education hours to qualify for license renewal. Contact your state board of nursing for specific CE requirements.

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