The nurse anesthesia program at Our Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University offers a Doctor of Nursing Practice in Nurse Anesthesia Degree (DNP-NA). The DNP-NA degree curriculum requires the completion of 100 credit hours, including a final scholarly project, anesthesia lab experience with high fidelity simulation and task trainers, and 2800 clinical hours over 36 months of continuous full time study. After the first two semesters the program requires continuous didactic and clinical instruction to provide the requisite number of anesthesia cases, classroom hours, and clinical hours for each student. The program is composed of sequential and integrated courses designed to facilitate achievement of its terminal objectives and outcomes.
The program has a diverse program faculty to include CRNAs and nonCRNAs with various educational backgrounds and areas of expertise. CRNA faculty members teach all anesthesia related content within the program and are responsible for oversight of the clinical aspect of the program. NonCRNA faculty members teach courses appropriate to their educational background and content expertise (i.e. Faculty member with a PhD in Physiology teaches the Anatomy, Physiology and Pathophysiology courses). · Typically one faculty member teaches face to face or traditional courses while online courses are taught by two faculty members. The ratio for traditional classroom experiences is 1 faculty member to 30-35 students (1:35 maximum), while online is 1: 15 (1:18 maximum) and simulation laboratory experiences is 1:4 (1:5 maximum).
The Anesthesia Skills and Simulation Lab is approximately 1800 square feet and adjoins the dedicated nurse anesthesia classroom. The lab has recently undergone a large renovation to include the addition of a control room with new audio and visual video equipment. The lab also has recently added two new Laerdal SimMan full body high fidelity simulators and two GE Healthcare Aisys anesthesia machines, as well as two new Ultra sound machines. The new equipment joins existing simulation equipment to include: one Laederal SimBaby high fidelity simulator, one Laederal SimJunior high fidelity simulator, two anesthesia machines, three neuraxial anesthesia task trainers, two arterial line task trainers, three central line task trainers with ultrasound capabilities, one femoral nerve block task trainer, one ultrasound machine, ten intubation task trainers and two flexible fiberoptic scope, ultrasound IV insertion trainers, and two McGrath enhanced direct laryngoscopes.
The Anesthesia Skills and Simulation Lab is solely used by nurse anesthesia students. Students use the lab throughout their educational experience to include a dedicated 16 week Skills and Simulation course during the fourth semester of the program.
The DNP scholarly project demonstrates mastery of the DNP curricular content. The scholarly project demonstrates the student’s ability to identify a practice or system related problem through clinical immersion, synthesize and critically appraise the evidence related to addressing that practice problem, negotiate within the system to implement sustainable evidence-based change within an organization, implement that change, and systematically measure the results of the practice or system related change initiative. The DNP scholarly project documents outcomes of the student’s educational experiences, and summarizes the student’s growth in knowledge and expertise.
The DNP Portfolio reflects outcome attainment of the DNP-NA Degree Program Graduate Learning Outcomes and the DNP Essentials (AACN, 2006) and demonstrates professional growth as an advanced practice nurse. The DNP Portfolio is a progressive project with assignments initiated early in the DNP-NA curriculum and is maintained throughout the program. The DNP portfolio is evaluated by faculty members on an intermittent basis and upon completion of the program. The DNP portfolio is maintained in an electronic format.
Since the August 2005 inception of the Master of Science in Nurse Anesthesia (MSNA) program at Franciscan University there have been 265 graduates. Of these 265 graduates, 257 passed the National Board of Certification and Recertification of Nurse Anesthetists (NBCRNA) National Certification Exam (NCE) on the first attempt (97%) with the remaining eight students passing on the second attempt.
The inaugural doctoral class of 2017 had an 86.4% first time pass rate on the National Board of Certification and Recertification of Nurse Anesthetists (NBCRNA) National Certification Exam (NCE), a graduation rate of 88% and an attrition rate of 12%. The employment rate for the class of 2017 was 100% within 6 months of graduation.
Our program’s pass rate is consistently higher than the national average pass rate.
All graduates have been employed within six months of graduation and indicate the program prepared them to function as competent anesthesia providers. Employers consistently rate the Franciscan University MSNA graduates as excellent practitioners with a broad knowledge base who demonstrate competency in administering anesthesia in all specialty areas. Several Franciscan University nurse anesthesia graduates currently serve on the board of directors for state associations and many are enrolled in DNP completion programs.
Applicants must have a current, unencumbered license to practice as a registered nurse (RN) in any state with eligibility for licensure in Louisiana to be eligible for admission into the program. Upon acceptance into the program, candidates must obtain a Louisiana RN license prior to the start of January classes.
Yes. The curriculum is designed to allow students to work for the first two semesters while they are enrolled in online courses. We expect our students to continue bed side nursing until they begin the traditional, on campus experience in August.