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American Association of Nurse Anesthesiologists

$65,500 of $100,000 goal

Raised by 698 people in 5 months
The Nurse Anesthesiologist Movement is officially underway! Help support the movement as we take the next steps to ensuring it comes to fruition. The first step will be to rename the AANA the American Association of Nurse Anesthesiologists! In order to get there though we will need funds for PR, marketing, legal expertise, etc. over the next couple months. All donations will go to supporting the Nurse Anesthesiologist Movement, and 100% of any leftover funding (should there be any) will go to the CRNA PAC!

This is a Grassroots member driven effort unlike anything ever seen before in AANA history! Be a part of the movement by making a contribution now. You can even donate anonymously. 

And lastly, even if you don't donate financially you can still show your support by voting to pass the Bylaw Amendment (in person or online) to rename the organization on August 10, 2019!

It's time to redefine! Let's make history in Chicago at the 2019 Annual Congress!

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Hi everyone,

After an intense Spring working on this issue, we have progress to report.

We now have a new title, recognized by our national association! "Certified Registered Nurse Anesthesiologist"

This is hugely impactful, especially in the legal sense, as compared to our original idea of the association name. Having a recognized title by the national association begins a slew of conversations with regulators across the country. Please take a look on AANA.com for the full title document, which also includes notes on following local and state policies.

Many of you are part of private forums where this change and the impact have been discussed extensively, and since this is a public update, I’ll keep things relatively brief. I will add that proper recognition is about more than just us, as CRNAs - it’s also about our patients, and our communities. CRNAs are often the difference between facilities staying in business or shutting down - and it’s that essential value that we seek to maximize.

Here is a basic accounting of costs:

Booth/Advertising Approx 2K
Legal approx 19K
Parlimentarian 500
Polling 20K
Room at MYA with refreshments approx 4300
Travel approx 2700
A/V approx 400
Approx Left over 14800

Remaining funds will be used for strategic state challenges. Movements like these are multi-faceted, and we'll continue to work to promote this now-official title at all levels. Thankfully, the legal evidence is piling up - the first amendment is a powerful ally.

On behalf of all the leaders involved in this movement - I thank you!!

Sincerely,

Joe Rodriguez, CRNA
CPRC Co-Founder
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Hi everyone,

Just a very brief update on logistics.

I'll be managing this from a seperate account, so I'll be depositing funds there, and then distributing funds via check either directly to vendors or reimbursing committee members directly who provide receipts.

The vendors include Ascend Concepts out of Oklahoma for polling and Jackson Healthcare Lawyers out of Chicago, Illinois. Vendors are decided on by votes of the committee based on their ability to move forward the campaign's goals.

A final account will be given on the private FB page.

Thanks!

Joseph A. Rodriguez
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Hi Everyone,

(This is public update and more information will be shared tomorrow morning in private groups).

Well, we are a bit shocked! Clearly, CRNAs do not feel well known - a fact that is understood within our community. The intent of this effort is to make more well known two simple facts:

1) CRNAs are members of the NURSING profession - Advanced Practice Registered Nurses.

and

2) CRNAs deliver expert-level anesthesia care.

These simple, powerful facts are not well known, and that limits the good that we can do for communities, and the care that we can give patients. CRNAs are confused for aestheticians, assistants, or medical doctors - we are not any of those things - but our current role is widely misunderstood in society.

On that note, we'd like to share this excerpt from www.nurseanesthsiologistinfo.com. The website is a complete repository of information on the matter and it is updated regularly. We think our supporters will especially enjoy this introduction:

"CRNAs have been administering anesthesia since the civil war, and yet confusion still exists regarding the CRNA role. This problem has inspired a network of CRNAs to organize into the Committee for Proper Recognition of CRNAs with the aim of increasing awareness for stakeholders that CRNAs are 1) Advanced Practice Registered Nurses who are 2) experts in anesthesia care. One part of that plan is to begin promoting the term “nurse anesthesiologist” since it more readily communicates the scope of services of CRNAs.

Since CRNAs and physicians, while having different backgrounds, both study and are experts in the field of anesthesiology, the question arises: how should stakeholders classify CRNAs? As independent professionals, as they are in some settings? Or as dependent providers, similar to assistants?

CRNAs have always been an independent profession and have been working for decades to have statutes properly recognize the CRNA role. It is known that CRNAs work in every state and cover every type of surgery, and that the majority of CRNAs work independently at some point in their practice. The care CRNAs deliver, in any model, is expert-level care. The discrepancy between what is (CRNAs giving expert level anesthesia care) and what is sometimes perceived (that CRNAs only work with physician anesthesiologists) must be rectified if CRNAs are to make their full contribution to patient care in communities across the country.

A significant step in proper recognition is to change the name of our national association from “The American Association of Nurse Anesthetists” to “The American Association of Nurse Anesthesiologists”. Given that the AANA is the leading authority on CRNA practice, it follows that this landmark change will affect other institutions throughout the country, and rather than recognizing CRNAs as “non-physician anesthetists” or “mid-levels” will lead to recognition as “nurse anesthesiologists” which is a definition based upon the fact that CRNAs are nursing professionals who patients and communities rely on across the country for expert-level anesthesiology care.

Of course, other professions also are key stakeholders in the field of anesthesia, specifically physician anesthesiologists, who are medical doctors or doctors of osteopathy. The term is not a provocation to physician anesthesiologists nor misleading, which is plain given the “nurse” in the discussed title. Indeed, the Committee is fully aware of the contributions of physicians to anesthesia care across the country, and many members work with physician anesthesiologists regularly. The Committee recognizes the rigorous education and training and the high degree of value of physician anesthesiologists to the specialty. With calm, rational education, we’ve seen the initial emotional reaction from some physicians be toned down, and both groups realize it’s possible to recognize the expertise of both physicians and CRNAs and to work together towards mutual goals.

Rather, the term clarifies that CRNAs are advanced practice nurses as well as experts in anesthesiology, and it follows logically with “physician anesthesiologist", the preferred term of the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA). Additionally the term is in response to some of the ASA’s lobbying efforts to place CRNAs in the same category as anesthesia assistants, which is not an accurate reflection of the level of services CRNAs offer. We should be clear: CRNAs do not want to be confused with aestheticians or nursing assistants, nor do they want to be confused for physicians.

“Nurse Anesthesiologist”, according to reports, has already been helpful in educating other on the profession, education and training, expertise, and practice accurately to the public, the healthcare community in specific contexts, and policy makers. The term “nurse anesthesiologist” does not seek to expand current CRNA practice, but rather to accurately describe and maintain our advanced nursing practice role.

The aim of this campaign is to eliminate confusion about the CRNA role, since patients and policymakers deserve accurate information about who is providing their anesthesia care. Although changing the professional title of “nurse anesthetists” to “nurse anesthesiologists” is a multi-faceted, multi-year process, updating the name of the AANA and utilizing the term “nurse anesthesiologist”, will serve as a paradigm change for the profession so that CRNAs can create value for patient across the country, in a time when high-quality, cost-effective anesthesia services are so desperately needed. "

Respectfully,

The Committee for Proper Recognition of CRNAs

--The Committee for Proper Recognition of CRNAs is a network of CRNAs around the country involved in private practice, academics, and administration and have commissioned this site as a resource for the public and stakeholder regarding the possible name change for nurse anesthetists due to the confusion surrounding the term “anesthetist”.
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I'm shocked! In just over 3 days, we hit our goal!

The problem we're solving is clear: when we are providing expert-level services, we are not using words that mean "expert", and often, we're not recognized as such. We won't solve this problem quickly, but changing our association name to the "American Association of Nurse Anesthesiologists" is a step forward in a simple and fundamental, way.

Clearly, proper recognition has struck a nerve with members of our profession, and the momentum behind this movement has surprised even me.

Thank you all for your support. We will continue to keep you updated as progress is made.

I'd like to leave you with a letter we're working on publishing. It summarizes the issue succinctly and was edited by my friend, Karyn Karp.

Have a great night, everyone -




To Whom It May Concern:

We would like to respectfully bring readers’ attention to the national discussion regarding the title “nurse anesthesiologist.” This has been discussed in our profession at different times, including nearly 30 years ago by Agatha Hodgins Award Winner Timothy J. Wolf, CRNA, longtime Practice Chairman of the California Association of Nurse Anesthetists (CANA). Proper recognition is a basic human need, and we are picking up his torch.

As leaders representing every segment of the profession, we believe adopting the title of “nurse anesthesiologist” is an idea whose time has come. Why is this time right?

• The title recognizes: 1) that we are advanced practice registered nurses; and 2) we are experts in the field of anesthesiology.

• The American Society of Anesthesiologists, having found that 6 out of 10 Americans do not recognize “anesthesiologists” as physicians, have begun stylizing themselves as “physician anesthesiologists.” This is in addition to other recognized “anesthesiologists,” including “dentist anesthesiologists.”

• The global context is changing. Physician “anaesthetists” in Ireland recently voted to change their title to “anaesthesiologists.” Australia is also considering the change.

• The title “anesthetist” has been co-opted by Anesthesiologist Assistants (AAs) in the U.S. Even in states with title protection for CRNAs and identification requirements for AAs, based on legal advice, there is no case for prohibiting use of the term “anesthetist.” Of course, it follows that there is also no legal case for prohibiting “nurse anesthesiologist” as well.

• Legal counsel has advised that even in the few states where “anesthesiologist” alone is defined in regulation or statute as a physician, “nurse anesthesiologist” would be a separate legal term.

• Merriam-Webster, which adds new words each year based upon increasing usage, has added “nurse anesthesiologist” to their dictionary.

This change is not meant as a provocation to physician anesthesiologists. Instead, it enhances awareness that along with our physician and dentist colleagues, CRNAs, as advanced practice registered nurses, are experts in the field of anesthesiology. In fact, it is perhaps because CRNAs are so often confused for physicians that we support this change so that audiences may clearly know that all CRNAs, whether or not they have earned a doctoral degree for entry into practice, are not physicians but rather advanced practice nursing professionals with expertise in the administration of anesthesia and pain management.

There is currently a bylaw amendment under consideration that would change the name of the AANA to “American Association of Nurse Anesthesiologists” to be voted on by members at the national congress this year. We urge members to vote yes.
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