Oregon is known for its beautiful natural scenery and many small-towns with west coast charm. Of course, Oregon is also home to several major metropolitan areas as well as tourist destinations. If you live in the state of Oregon and are considering becoming a CRNA, this article is a great place to begin. You may be wondering what kind of education or training it takes to become a CRNA in Oregon as well as what it might be like to practice as a CRNA in Oregon. This article will provide detailed information on both of those subjects as well as information about the current option for CRNA schooling in Oregon, The Oregon Health and Science University School of Nursing, which is located in Portland and offers a Nurse Anesthesia Program.
CRNA Training and Education
CRNAs are highly trained medical professionals. In order to become a CRNA, you must complete certain education as well as certification requirements. If you are beginning your journey to becoming a CRNA as a registered nurse, you have already met one of the requirements. Below is a listing of the things that are generally expected of an applicant to CRNA school:
- A Bachelor’s of Science Degree with a major in Nursing or a BSN degree in a similar field
- Licensed as a Registered Nurse (and able to obtain an RN license in the state in which the school is located)
- At least one year of adult or pediatric critical care ICU experience
- *GPA of 3.0, certain GRE Scores, Letters of Recommendation, Essay Questions, Resume
The first three bulleted points in the above list are usually standard requirements across most CRNA programs (although some details of each may vary). The requirements listed after the asterisk can and do vary between individual CRNA schools. Some schools look into GRE scores and require a certain grade point average and some do not, some require letters of recommendation, essay questions, and copies of professional resumes while others do not. Most all CRNA schools use some form of online or electronic admissions process so it is usually possible to conduct an online search for the specific admissions requirements for any individual school you may be looking into.
If you are accepted into a CRNA program, you may be wondering what the course of study will be like. Each program will vary, but in general, a CRNA program will consist of two main components, academic study and clinical work. Academic study will usually take place in a typical classroom environment or in some cases will be done partially online. It will consist of subjects such as biology, pharmacology, and physiology all with a specific focus on the relation to the field of anesthesia. Classroom study provides the basic knowledge of anesthesia practice. Clinical work will take place at any number of hospitals or medical facilities with which your particular program is linked. Clinical time will give the student hands-on real-world experience with different types of anesthesia and knowledge of the medical situations in which it may be required. Both the classroom and clinical experiences are important to ensure that a CRNA graduate is well-trained and able to complete and pass the National Certification Exam, which is required in order to practice as a CRNA.
CRNA Jobs in Oregon
According to the Oregon Association of Nurse Anesthetists (ORANA), the Oregon Health and Sciences University School of Nursing has offered their program for nurse anesthesia since 2006. Oregon currently has over 350 practicing CRNAs. 40% of all CRNAs in Oregon practice in rural or non-metropolitan portions of the state. ORANA reports that all of Oregon’s 25 critical access hospitals use CRNAs for their anesthesia services. CRNAs are the sole providers of anesthesia care in many of the country’s non metropolitan areas. Without CRNA care, many of Oregon’s residents in need of anesthesia services would have to travel long distances to receive such care. With CRNAs working in rural areas, access to anesthesia care is much improved.
The specific salary for CRNA jobs in Oregon can vary widely depending upon many different factors. Some of these factors include the type of medical facility, the location of the medical facility, and the experience level of the CRNA. The Bureau of Labor Statistics released a report in 2013 containing the annual mean wages for CRNAs in many states across the country. While it is a rough look at potential CRNA salaries in each state, it may be of assistance in providing some general ideas as to a typical CRNA salary in Oregon. The BLS report lists the annual mean wage of an Oregonian CRNA as $157,070. The range of CRNA salaries reported in Oregon was $145,020-$158,840. This puts Oregon CRNAs in the same wage range as those practicing in other states such as Oklahoma, Illinois, Tennessee, and Ohio.
Listing of Oregon CRNA Schools
Oregon Health and Science University School of Nursing Nurse Anesthesia Program
3455 SW US Veteran’s Hospital Road
Portland, OR 97239
- Degree Type Offered: Master of Nursing (Entry Level)
- Average Program Duration: 27 months
- Start Month: September
- Number of Clinical Sites: 20