Nurse Anesthetist Salary and Career Outlook

A career as a nurse anesthetist is a great choice for anyone interested in a nursing career with excellent job prospects and high salaries.

Nurse anesthetists are in high demand due to the aging population and the increasing number of surgeries being performed each year. By 2026, the demand for nurse anesthetists is expected to grow by 26%. CRNAs are highly respected for their work and, according to U.S. News & World Report.

Nurse anesthetists enjoy great job security and can work in various settings, including hospitals, outpatient surgery centers, and pain management clinics. If you are considering a career as a nurse anesthetist, you may wonder about the nurse anesthetist’s salary and career outlook.

Let’s see what the data says about this exciting career choice.

What is a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA)?

A Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) is a nurse who has completed advanced training in anesthesia and is certified to administer anesthesia independently.

CRNAs are an important part of the anesthesia care team, working with surgeons, anesthesiologists, and other medical professionals to ensure that patients receive safe and effective anesthesia care.

CRNAs typically have a master’s degree in nursing and must pass a national certification exam to practice. The scope of practice for CRNAs varies by state, but most CRNAs can administer all types of anesthesia, including general anesthesia, regional anesthesia, and local anesthesia.

In addition to administering anesthesia, CRNAs also play a key role in patient education and post-operative care.

What Does a Nurse Anesthetist Do?

Nurse anesthetists are responsible for administering anesthesia to patients who are undergoing surgery or other medical procedures. In addition to giving the anesthesia, nurse anesthetists also monitor the patient’s vital signs and ensure they remain safe and comfortable throughout the procedure.

How Much Does a CRNA Make?

It’s no secret that nurse anesthetists are some of the highest-paid nurses in the profession. But just how much does a nurse anesthetist make?

According to, the average Certified Nurse Anesthetist salary in the United States is $201,934 as of September 26, 2022, but the range typically falls between $187,615 and $218,356.

Salary ranges can vary widely depending on many important factors, including education, certifications, additional skills, and the number of years you have spent in your profession.

  • An entry-level Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) with less than 1-year experience can expect to earn an average total compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime pay) of $150,883 based on 124 salaries.
  • An early career Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) with 1-4 years of experience earns an average total compensation of $154,197 based on 362 salaries.
  • A mid-career Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) with 5-9 years of experience earns an average total compensation of $168,523 based on 241 salaries.
  • An experienced Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) with 10-19 years of experience earns an average total compensation of $187,615 based on 293 salaries.
  • In their late career (20 years or higher), employees earn an average compensation of $218,356.
  • Getting a specialty certification such as an advanced practice nurse can be a huge boost to your earning potential. We wrote some tips about the PMHNP exam that may be relevant for the CRNA exam also.

Also, there is one more factor: different states in America have different average salaries for Nurse Anesthetists. The demand in the geographical area also matters.

CRNA Salaries by States

StatesPer HourPer State
New Hampshire$94.99$197,570
New Jersey$99.76$207,500
New Mexico$79.32$164,980
New York$104.35$217,050
North Carolina$92.71$192,830
North Dakota$92.33$192,050
South Carolina$89.35$185,850
South Dakota$91.66$190,660
West Virginia$90.11$187,430

All salary data courtesy of the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

How Promising Is the Job Outlook for CRNAs?

When it comes to career outlook, nurse anesthetists are in high demand. The aging population and the increasing number of surgeries each year drive the demand for nurse anesthetists.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for nurse anesthetists is expected to grow by 26%, which is much faster than the average for all occupations.

During this decade, almost 3,000 job openings will be available for Nurse Anesthetists. Job opportunities will arise from employment growth and the need to replace workers who leave this occupation.

The best job prospects for nurse anesthetists will be in rural areas, where access to healthcare providers is limited. Also, those who are willing to work weekends and evenings will have the best job prospects.

How Long Does It Take to Get Certified?

Now you know more about the nurse anesthetist’s salary and career outlook. But what does it take to become a nurse anesthetist? Let’s take a look at the educational requirements and the certification process.

Bachelor’s degree in nursingAverage of four years
RN licensureEligible upon completion of bachelor’s degree
Acute care experienceMinimum of one year
Graduate degree (MSN or DNP) in nurse anesthesiaTwo to four years
CRNA certificationEligible upon completion of graduate degree
State licensingEligible upon passing the CRNA certification exam

On average, it takes 6 to 8 years to become an experienced CRNA.

The requirements for becoming a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) mainly include having a bachelor’s degree in nursing (or other appropriate baccalaureate degree), Registered Nurse licensure, a minimum of one year acute care experience (for example, ICU or ER), and the successful completion of both an accredited nurse anesthesia educational program and the national certification examination.
You can also find a list of accredited CRNA programs and check out the ebook CRNA School Admissions: The Cold Hard Facts.

Where Can CRNA Work?

CRNAs can work in various settings, including hospitals, clinics, and physician offices. They may also work in ambulatory surgery, dental, and pain management centers.


A career as a nurse anesthetist can be very rewarding, but it’s important to consider your level of education, skills, and future goals before making any decisions. It’s also crucial to understand the salary and career outlook so you know what to expect. If you’re interested in pursuing a career as a nurse anesthetist, be sure to do your research.

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