The state of Alaska is often thought of as a vacation destination for the adventurous traveler. With its sometimes harsh climate and extreme environment, it can seem like a challenging place for some to call home; however, Alaska is also filled with a spectacular natural beauty that appeals to many non-outdoor-enthusiasts as well. While there are not currently CRNA schools in Alaska, if you are considering a career as a CRNA, Alaska offers many different options for potential employment opportunities.
Locations for CRNA Jobs in Alaska
According to the Alaska Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AKANA), there are currently over 100 practicing CRNAs in the state. Due to the large size of the state CRNAs are widely disbursed throughout Alaska. A CRNA practicing in Alaska may be based in a city center, but may also work as an independent contractor and provide anesthesia services to various rural locations simultaneously. CRNAs are often the sole anesthesia providers for many rural areas across the country. Without them, many citizens would have to travel unreasonably long distances, especially in large states like Alaska, in order to have a procedure that required anesthetics.
The AKANA reports that the area with the largest concentration of CRNAs in Alaska is in the city of Anchorage. In addition to rural hospitals, outpatient facilities, and private practices, there are also two military bases in Alaska where military CRNAs can practice- Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson and Bassett Army Hospital in Fort Wainwright.
Requirements for becoming a CRNA
The general education and experience requirements for becoming a CRNA in Alaska, as listed by the AKANA, are as follows:
- A BSN in Nursing
- A current license as an RN
- At least one year of experience as an RN in a critical care setting
- Graduation from a CRNA program
- Pass the National Certification Examination
While these are the general requirements, it is always important to check the specifics with any potential employer when applying for or accepting a position. Individual facilities within Alaska will likely have their own list of education and experience requirements which go above and beyond simply being a licensed CRNA.
Salary of a CRNA in Alaska
The annual mean wage reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics for a CRNA working in Alaska was between $145,020 and $158,840 in May of 2013. Salaries for CRNAs will vary widely based on location as well as many other factors and can also change over time.