Working as part of a surgical team in operating rooms, anesthesia technicians provide assistance to physicians and other anesthesia professionals. Online training in this field is not common, but there are hybrid certificate options available. Programs typically require specific work and on-campus classes. Students could find online certificate options for anesthesia technicians through schools' continuing educations departments. These may not award college credit, but they might help prepare students for certification. The certificate program is usually designed for those who have a professional background in healthcare.
Individuals can typically earn a certificate in under a year. Graduates are eligible to take the certification exams administered by the American Society of Anesthesia Technologists and Technicians, provided they have obtained the required clinical experience in the field through their jobs or other venues.
An anesthesia technician training program in anesthesia technology gives students the opportunity to learn how anesthesia equipment and supplies work, as well as how to care for patients before, during and after they receive anesthesia. Most programs lead to an associate's degree and are available from community colleges or similar two-year schools.
Due to the hands-on work in this field, training programs are rarely online. However, some institutions could offer some of the required general education coursework through distance learning, thereby reducing the amount of overall campus attendance.
Many employers prefer anesthesia technicians who have earned professional certification, which demonstrates that the technician has met the requirements and standards of a nationally recognized professional organization. Technicians can meet certification requirements in a variety of ways, including through a combination of work experience and an educational program.
Anesthesiology support staff, licensed practical nurses, certified medical assistants and paramedics are eligible for admittance into this program providing that they meet specific education and work experience guidelines. Previous college-level coursework in math and English is required and computer skills will be needed. Applicants must also pass a criminal background check.
Classes are accessed online through the school's online classroom. Lectures are delivered via webcast and other materials are delivered in various formats, such as presentations, slide shows and pre-taped videos. Students must ensure they meet their school's technology requirements, as online programs in this field may use various instructional tools like interactive learning aids.
Coursework is designed to provide additional knowledge in areas already covered in the student's on-the-job training. Students learn how to use the latest anesthesiology equipment through interactive simulations. Classes provide in-depth study in topics such as:
- Pharmacology & Anesthesia
- Anesthesia Equipment
- Human Anatomy and Physiology
- Patient Monitoring
- Critical Care Protocol
In summary, online options for anesthesia technician training programs are limited, but some courses can be taken alongside campus classes and practicums.