Nurse Anesthetist Certifications

CRNA certification is granted to licensed nurses who successfully pass a national certification exam for registered nurse anesthetists. CRNA certification programs are available at several accredited colleges and universities around the country and the exams are administered by the Credentials Committee of the AANA. The National Board on Certification and Recertification of Nurse Anesthetists (NBCRNA) is responsible for setting the standards for nurse anesthetists and has created the requirements for eligibility for admission to the National Certification Examination.

CRNA Certification Requirements

You will be trained to meet all CRNA certification requirements when completing an approved CRNA degree program at an accredited college or university. Only those who are registered nurses, have successfully completed a bachelor's degree in nursing (BSN) or related degree, and have met all clinical or work experience requirements are eligible to take this national exam.

You can also take certified registered nurse anesthetist certification test prep courses independently. You can find these online and through training centers in your area. These are ideal for those who need to brush up on certain subjects or for those who may be struggling with certain subjects during school.

It's important to note that certification is different from licensure. Licensure refers to the process where the state government grants permission to those who want to serve as a certified registered nurse anesthetist in their state. Licensure and certification are required in every state, however. One of the CRNA certification requirements is to have a current license.

About the CRNA Certification Exam

The CRNA certification exam is a computerized exam and is designed to test your skills and knowledge for entry-level positions in the field. The CRNA certification exam consists of between 100 to 170 questions and typically takes about three hours to complete. Candidates typically get their test results about four weeks after taking the exam.

The NBCRNA is responsible for formulating, adopting and administering the national certification exam to registered nurse anesthetists who have met all requirements and are deemed eligible by the NBCRNA. This is the organization that evaluates the candidates' performance and will also serves as the sole issuer of the nationally-recognized certificate.

Passing this exam gives you the CRNA designation and this is accepted anywhere in the United States. However, you will still need to meet your state's licensing requirements in order to practice as a certified registered nurse anesthetist in your state. You will also need to be recertified every two years.

Verifying Nurse Anesthetist Certification

You can verify nurse anesthetist certification any time by logging on to the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists website. The Certification Verification page asks for the individual's Social Security Number and the AANA number. You can look up the certification status within seconds and find out when the current certification expires. Keep in mind that CRNAs need to take at continuing education courses every year to maintain certification. Failure to do so will result in not being able to practice and provide any types of services in a medical setting. Employers will ask for proof of current certification during the interview process.