Newswise — The American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA) Board of Directors approved a position statement recommending that Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs)  and student registered nurse anesthetists educate themselves to make an informed decision about receiving the vaccine and ensure that their healthcare administrators are aware of the important role CRNAs have in patient care, especially during the pandemic.

CRNAs are in close contact with a patient’s airway during intubation, anesthesia delivery, and extubation, increasing their potential exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 virus through droplet or aerosol routes. A healthy anesthesia workforce will be crucial to keeping CRNAs, their patients, their colleagues, and their families safe.

The AANA commends the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s team of advisors on prioritizing frontline healthcare personnel and residents of long-term facilities for the first phase of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution.

The vaccine is an additional tool to support clinician safety. CRNAs should continue to use appropriate personal protective equipment and follow safety precautions, including infection prevention and control and hand hygiene practices.