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    Columbia Campus
  Jun 18, 2024
2009-2010 Graduate Studies Bulletin (Archived Copy) 
2009-2010 Graduate Studies Bulletin (Archived Copy) [Archived Catalog]

Nursing Anesthesia, M.N.A.

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Curriculum Application Information
Admission Standards School of Medicine 

The nurse anesthetist is a highly trained medical care specialist who, under the supervision of a physician, is responsible for the anesthesia requirements of patients in all areas of surgery. The nurse anesthetist develops, implements, and evaluates the anesthetic plan of care for individual patients and is a vital part of the health care team. The nurse anesthesia program at the University of South Carolina is a cooperative program between the School of Medicine and the Palmetto Richland Memorial Hospital School of Nurse Anesthesia. The PRMH School has been training nurse anesthetists since 1969 with involvement of the School of Medicine faculty since 1986. A program leading to a Master of Nurse Anesthesia was approved in 1993. Students who successfully complete the program will be eligible to take the National Certification Examination given by the Council on Certification of Nurse Anesthetists. The program is accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Education Programs.


The curriculum consists of a 27-month course of study including clinical training and didactic courses in physiology, pharmacology, principles of anesthesia, and others. Palmetto Richland Memorial Hospital is the primary clinical training site where students complete 50 percent of their clinical anesthesia training. Clinical affiliations currently exist at several additional sites: Providence Hospital/Providence Heart Institute, Lexington Medical Center, Moncrief Army Hospital, Greenville Hospital System, Bon Secours St. Francis Hospital, Providence Northeast Hospital, Palmetto Health Baptist-Columbia, Kershaw County Medical Center, Anderson Area Medical Center, Oconee Memorial Hospital, Springs Hospital, and Conway Medical Center. To meet the criteria for graduation and to meet the requirements to write the Certification Exam from the Council on Certification, students participate in a minimum of 550 anesthesia cases covering a variety of clinical experiences, including general and regional anesthetics for pediatrics, obstetrics, geriatrics, cardiovascular-thoracic, neurological, plastic otolaryngology, ophthalmology, urology, orthopedics, and radiological procedures. Beginning with the Spring 2010 Semester, Greenville Memorial Hospital in Greenville, South Carolina will become an additional primary clinical training site for the program. A cohort of students will be selected to complete their clinical training at that site. Selected courses of the curriculum will be taught via distant education.

Admission Standards

  1. a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from an NLN-accredited program or Bachelor of Science degree in a related science (official transcripts from each school or college previously attended with degrees posted are required); a GPA of 3.00 or higher on a 4.00 scale is preferred; the average GPA for admitted students was 3.50 for the Class of 2008;
  2. current licensure as a registered nurse in one of the 50 states; South Carolina licensure is required for matriculation;
  3. a satisfactory score on the GRE, taken within five years of applying; the average GRE for admitted students was 493 verbal and 583 quantitative for the Class of 2009;
  4. a minimum of one year full-time critical care nursing experience prior to the application deadline of June 15; clinical experience within the past three years is preferred and must be direct hands-on patient care in an intensive care or coronary care unit; alternate clinical experiences to substitute shall be evaluated upon request;
  5. satisfactory completion and current documentation of Basic Life Support and Advanced Cardiac Life Support;
  6. letters of recommendation from two health care professionals who have supervised clinical experience;
  7. current resume.

Prerequisites must be met prior to an offer for interview. Admission is competitive and students are chosen on the basis of their academic record, employment history and performance, character, and general fitness for the study of nurse anesthesia. To be accepted, the applicant must submit evidence of good physical health, emotional stability, and personality considered necessary for successful performance as a nurse anesthetist. Students admitted to the Master of Nurse Anesthesia program are selected by an admissions committee composed of faculty from the USC School of Medicine, clinical coordinators, and nurse anesthesia students.

Application Information

Application deadline is June 15. Selected candidates for admission will be scheduled for a personal interview with the admissions committee to be held in July and/or August of the year prior to the January orientation and start of the program in spring semester. Letters of appointment will be sent to applicants in August; these notified applicants are required to send a reply with their intentions concerning matriculation within two weeks of the letter of appointment. A $250 nonrefundable deposit must accompany the letter of acceptance. This deposit will be applied to the first-year clinical fees when the student matriculates. For further questions pertaining to a career in nurse anesthesia, please contact the clinical director of the USC/PRMH Graduate Program in Nurse Anesthesia at 803-434-6344 or e-mail

For application materials, direct inquiries to the School of Medicine Graduate Office, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29208; call 803-733-3100; or visit our Web site at

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