Nurse Anesthetists’ Number One Priority and Passion are one and the Same: Their Patients

January 19, 2014

Altus - In recognition of their profession’s commitment to exceptional patient care, Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) in Altus from Jackson County Memorial Hospital (JCMH) and across the country are celebrating the 15th annual National Nurse Anesthetists Week, Jan. 19-25. This year’s theme is “Our Priority. Our Passion. Our Patients.” The five CRNA’s working at JCMH are Mark Vadney, Jessica Poe, Johnny Sacco, Mark Waterman, and Brian Knight.

Established by the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA), National Nurse Anesthetists Week was created to encourage CRNAs to take the opportunity to educate the public about anesthesia safety, questions to ask prior to undergoing surgery, and the benefits of receiving anesthesia care from nurse anesthetists. The theme of this year’s campaign emphasizes the high standards to which CRNAs adhere when administering anesthesia, and the quality of care they provide for their patients.

“One of the many rewards of being a nurse anesthetist is providing patients with the comfort of knowing that I will be by their side monitoring their vital signs and adjusting their anesthetics to ensure a pain free and safe anesthesia experience,” said Jessica Poe, CRNA. “National Nurse Anesthetists Week serves as an opportunity to inform the public exactly what CRNAs do and who we are.”

Nurse anesthetists are advanced practice registered nurses who administer approximately 34 million anesthetics in the United States each year. Practicing in every setting where anesthesia is available, CRNAs are the sole anesthesia professionals in the vast majority of rural hospitals and have been the main provider of anesthesia care to U.S. service men and women on the front lines since World War I.

“I take pride in belonging to a profession that places patient safety and education on the top of its list of priorities. Nurse anesthetists have been at the forefront of anesthesia patient safety for 150 years. CRNAs play a key role in developing trends related to monitoring technology, anesthetic drugs, and standards of care. In fact, due to continuing research and education, anesthesia today is nearly 50 times safer than it was 20 years ago,” said Poe.