St Mary’s University Nurse Anesthesia Program

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St Mary’s University Nurse Anesthesia Program

This is a program offered by Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota Graduate School of Health and Human Services. The qualified Registered Nurse is admitted to Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota and is directed toward the goal of earning a Master of Science in Nurse Anesthesia. Saint Mary’s University believes in building and developing on the baccalaureate base with emphasis on a strong scientific and technical background. Graduates will be prepared to practice in a wide variety of settings and in diverse methods of administering a safe anesthetic. The graduate is eligible to write the certification examination as offered by the National Council on Certification and Recertification of Nurse Anesthetists (NBCRNA). Successful completion of the examination entitles the graduate to be known as a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist.

Program Outcomes

  1. Demonstrate the ability to provide safe and competent care throughout the perianesthetic continuum.
  2. Demonstrate critical thinking skills.
  3. Communicate effectively.
  4. Demonstrate professional behavior.
  5. Continue to learn throughout their careers.

Program Outcome Objectives

Patient safety is demonstrated by the ability of the graduate to:
  1. Be vigilant in the delivery of patient care.
  2. Refrain from engaging in extraneous activities that abandon or minimize vigilance while providing direct patient care (e.g., texting, reading, e-mailing, etc.)
  3. Protect patients from iatrogenic complications.
  4. Participate in the positioning of patients to prevent injury.
  5. Conduct a comprehensive and appropriate equipment check.
  6. Utilize standard precautions and appropriate infection control measures.
Individualized perianesthetic management is demonstrated by the ability of the graduate to:
  1. Provide care throughout the perianesthetic continuum.
  2. Use a variety of current anesthesia techniques, agents, adjunctive drugs, and equipment while providing anesthesia.
  3. Administer general anesthesia to patients of all ages and physical conditions for a variety of surgical and medically related procedures.
  4.  Provide anesthesia services to all patients, including trauma and emergency cases.
  5. Administer and manage a variety of regional anesthetics.
  6. Function as a resource person for airway and ventilatory management of patients.
  7. Possess current advanced cardiac life support (ACLS) recognition.
  8. Possess current pediatric advanced life support (PALS) recognition.
  9. Deliver culturally competent perianesthetic care throughout the anesthesia experience (see Glossary: Culturally competent).
  10. Perform a comprehensive history and physical assessment (see Glossary: Comprehensive History and Physical Assessment).
Critical thinking is demonstrated by the graduate’s ability to:
  1. Apply knowledge to practice in decision-making and problem solving.
  2. Provide nurse anesthesia care based on sound principles and research evidence.
  3. Perform a preanesthetic assessment and formulate an anesthesia care plan for patients to whom they are assigned to administer anesthesia.
  4. Identify and take appropriate action when confronted with anesthetic equipment-related malfunctions.
  5. Interpret and utilize data obtained from noninvasive and invasive monitoring modalities.
  6. Calculate, initiate, and manage fluid and blood component therapy.
  7. Recognize and appropriately respond to anesthetic complications that occur during the perianesthetic period.
  8. Pass the Council on Certification of Nurse Anesthetists’ (CCNA) certification examination in accordance with CCNA policies and procedures.
Communication skills are demonstrated by the graduate’s ability to:
  1. Effectively communicate with individuals influencing patient care.
  2. Utilize appropriate verbal, nonverbal, and written communication in the delivery of perianesthetic care.
Professional responsibility is demonstrated by the graduate’s ability to:
  1. Participate in activities that improve anesthesia care.
  2. Function within appropriate legal requirements as a registered professional nurse, accepting responsibility and accountability for his or her practice.
  3. Interact on a professional level with integrity.
  4. Teach others.
  5. Participate in continuing education activities to acquire new knowledge and improve his or her practice.
  6. Demonstrate knowledge of wellness and chemical dependency in the anesthesia profession through completion of content in wellness and chemical dependency.

Program Philosophy

The Master of Science program in Nurse Anesthesia originated in response to the request of leaders in the health care field for graduate level education in the field of Nurse Anesthesia. With this need in mind, Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota developed this program.

With a focus on meeting the needs of adult learners, the program’s goal is to provide a positive and supportive learning environment, preparing the professional nurse in the art and science of anesthesia and meeting the societal need for safe and competent anesthesia care.

The program provides the student with a curriculum that includes formal and informal instruction in scientific principles, clinical practice and professional growth opportunities. Core values upheld by all members of this community include academic excellence, professionalism and personal integrity, responsibility and compassion. A shared sense of responsibility exists between the faculty and the student to reach the goal of becoming a Nurse Anesthetist.

Program Accreditation

The Nurse Anesthesia Program enjoys full accreditation from the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs. The Council is recognized by the United States Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.

Degree Requirements

Students earn a minimum of 64 semester credits in a 28-month (seven semester) program by integrating clinical and academic experiences.

First Year: Semester I (Summer)

  • NA630 Professional Aspects of Nurse Anesthesia Practice (3 cr.)
  • NA640 Chemistry and Physics for Nurse Anesthesia (4 cr.)
  • NA606 Research Design and Statistical Analysis (3 cr.)
  • NA635 Professional Communication (3 cr.)

First Year: Semester II (Fall)

  • NA614 Advanced Health Assessment for Nurse Anesthesia (2 cr.)
  • NA618 Principles of Anesthesia I (4 cr.)
  • NA645 Advanced Physiology and Pathophysiology 1 (6 cr.)
  • NA651 Pharmacology for Nurse Anesthetists (3 cr.)

First Year: Semester III (Spring)

  • NA650 Physiology and Pathophysiology II (5 cr.)
  • NA661 Pharmacology (3 cr.)
  • NA620 Principles of Anesthesia Practice II (6 cr.)
  • NA770 Clinical Practicum I (2 cr.) (150 hrs.)

Second Year: Semester IV (Summer)

  • NA781 Synthesis Paper Proposal (2 cr.)
  • NA771 Clinical Practicum, Summer Semester (2 cr.) (480 hrs.)
  • NA780 Clinical Integration (3 cr.)

Second Year: Semester V (Fall)

  • NA632 Professional Aspects of Nurse Anesthesia Department (1 cr.)
  • NA783 Synthesis Paper (2 cr.)
  • NA772 Clinical Practicum, Fall Semester (2 cr.) (480 hrs.)

Second Year: Semester VI (Spring)

  • NA782 Program Comprehensive Exams (1 cr.)
  • NA773 Clinical Practicum, Spring Semester (3 cr.) (600 hrs.)

Third Year: Semester VII (Summer)

  • NA784 Synthesis Paper Presentation (1 cr.)
  • NA774 Clinical Practicum, Summer Semester (3 cr.) (600 hrs.)

Total: 64 cr.