Because the Nurse Anesthesia degree signifies that the holder is an anesthetist prepared for entry into the practice of nurse anesthesia, it follows that graduates must have the knowledge and skills to function in a broad variety of clinical situations and to render a wide spectrum of patient care.
Therefore the following abilities and expectations must be met by all students admitted to the nurse anesthesia program:
OBSERVATION - The nurse anesthesia student must be able to observe demonstrations and experiences in the basic sciences including, but not limited to, physiologic and pharmacologic demonstrations in animals, microbiological cultures, microscopic studies of microorganisms and tissues in normal and pathologic states. A student must be able to observe a patient accurately at a distance and close at hand.
Observation necessitates the functional use of the sense of vision and somatic sensation. It is enhanced by the functional use of the sense of smell. Students must have visual acuity within normal ranges appropriate to work within the confines of anesthetizing areas (with electronic monitoring and ventilatory equipment).
COMMUNICATION - A nurse anesthesia student should be able to speak, to hear and to observe patients in order to elicit information, describe changes in mood, activity and posture, and perceive nonverbal communications. A student must be able to communicate effectively and sensitively with patients. Communication includes not only speech but reading and writing. The anesthetist must be able to communicate effectively and efficiently in oral and written form with all members of the health care team. Students must have hearing activity within normal ranges of motor facility appropriate to work within the confines of anesthetizing areas (with electronic monitoring and ventilatory equipment).
BEHAVIORAL AND SOCIAL ATTRIBUTES - Every student must possess the emotional health required for full utilization of his/her intellectual abilities, the exercise of good judgment, the prompt completion of all responsibilities attendant to the diagnosis and care of patients, and the development of mature sensitive and effective relationships with patients. Students must be able to tolerate physically taxing workloads and to function effectively under stress. They must be able to adapt to changing environments, to display flexibility, and to learn to function in the face of uncertainties inherent in the clinical problems of many patients. Compassion, integrity, concern for others, interpersonal skill, interest and motivation are all personal qualities that should be assessed during the education process.
INTELLECTUAL, CONCEPTUAL, INTEGRATIVE AND QUANTITATIVE ABILITIES - The abilities include measurement, calculation, reasoning, analysis and synthesis. Problem solving, the critical skill demanded of care givers, requires all of these intellectual abilities. In addition, students should be able to comprehend three dimensional relationships and to understand the spatial relationships of structures.
PHYSICAL ATTRIBUTES - Nurse anesthesia students should have sufficient motor function to elicit information from patients by palpation, auscultation, percussion, and other diagnostic maneuvers. A student should be physically able to do basic laboratory tests (urinalysis, CBC, etc.), and to read EKGs and x-rays. A student should be able to execute motor movements reasonably required to provide general care and emergency treatment to patients. Examples of emergency treatment reasonably required are cardiopulmonary resuscitation, the administration of intravenous medication, the application of pressure to stop bleeding, the opening of obstructed airways and the suturing of simple wounds. Such actions require coordination of both gross and fine muscular movements, equilibrium and functional use of the senses of touch and vision. Students must be able physically to respond to emergency calls without locomotion or transportation limitations which would negate a timely response. Students must be able physically to respond to emergency calls without locomotion or transportation limitations which would negate a timely response. Students must document that no disease process exists which predisposes them to hepatic disorders.