The specific job descriptions and duties of AAs may differ according to geographic area and local practice. State law or board of medicine regulations or guidelines may further define the job descriptions of AAs. AAs practice under the direction of a qualified anesthesiologist.
The AA's functions include, but are not limited to, the following:
The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) accredits AA training programs.
The National Commission for Certification of Anesthesiologist Assistants (NCCAA) was founded in July 1989 to develop and administer the certification process for AAs in the United States.
Graduates or senior students in an AA educational program that has been accredited by the CAAHEP may apply for initial certification. Initial certification is awarded to an AA who has successfully completed the Certifying Examination for Anesthesiologist Assistants administered by NCCAA in collaboration with the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME). Certified AAs are permitted to use the designation AA-C to indicate that they are currently certified
Yes. In order to maintain certification after passing the initial examination, AAs must submit documentation to NCCAA that they have completed 40 hours of continuing medical education (CME) every two years. In addition, every six years they must pass the Examination for Continued Demonstration of Qualifications (CDQ).
The use of AAs within the anesthesia care team across the country is a dynamic and evolving process. Therefore, in order to get the latest and most accurate information, please contact your state board of medicine or the American Academy of Anesthesiologist Assistants.