Pediatric Cardiac Nurse Anesthetist

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Basic description

A pediatric cardiac nurse anesthetist is part of the pediatric cardiac anesthesia team responsible for the care of children undergoing cardiac surgery and other cardiovascular procedures such as electrophysiologic studies. The pediatric cardiac nurse anesthetist is responsible for meeting the patient and the family before the operation to explain what to expect during and after the procedure.

Educational requirements

Registered nurse preparation and certification as Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist are required; experience in acute or emergency care is mostly required; Basic Life Support, Pediatric Advanced Life Support, and Advanced Cardiac Life Support certifications are required; certification is offered by the National Board on Certification and Recertification of Nurse Anesthetists.

Core competencies/skills needed

■ Ability to work with members of the team
■ Excellent communication skills and sensitivity when addressing the needs and concerns of the family and the patient
■ Excellent assessment skills and advance knowledge in cardiovascular, pulmonary, and hemodynamic physiology, management, and pharmacology
■ Ability to work in a high-stress environment that requires quick decisions in cases of emergency and sudden change in patients’ hemodynamic status
■ Patient care requires light-to-moderate lifting

Related Web sites and professional organizations

■ American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (http://www.aana.com/)
■ International Federation of Nurse Anesthetists (http://ifna-int.org/ifna/news.php)
■ National Board on Certification and Recertification of Nurse Anesthetists (http://www.nbcrna.com/)

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