Legislative updates


Pennsylvania is one of just two states (New York is the other) that fail to recognize CRNAs in some form. Because there is no definition for “certified registered nurse anesthetist” under the state’s Professional Nursing Law, CRNAs are recognized only as registered nurses (RNs), not as CRNAs. With a new legislative session underway, we will continue to work in a bipartisan manner with the legislature on developing measures to finally and formally recognize nurse anesthetists as “CRNAs” under Pennsylvania statute. To summarize the 2019-2020 session:

  • Senator John R. Gordner (R-Columbia) re-introduced his measure (S.B. 325) and his bill unanimously passed the Senate in June 2019. However, SB 325 did not reach committee approval in the House.

  • Rep. Tarah Toohil (R-Luzerne) introduced a companion bill to Senator Gordner’s legislation, (H.B. 1064). Rep. Toohil’s legislation was not considered by the House Professional Licensure Committee.


You can read the PANA fact sheet about both measures HERE or hear from them in our latest videos. These professional designation bills are simple, non-controversial title recognition measures and deserve legislative support. 




In the state’s 2021-22 legislative session, the General Assembly is expected to consider legislation that would license anesthesiologist assistants (AAs) for the first time in Pennsylvania. This is bad public policy that will do nothing to enhance patient care or make health care more accessible, but instead will increase the cost of care and severely limit the practice of certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs). Learn more about AA legislation and how to discuss the issue with lawmakers by CLICKING HERE.




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Groups that support title recognition for CRNAs in Pennsylvania:

Pennsylvania Farm Bureau (PFB) - View Letter of Support for the work of CRNAs, especially in rural areas

Pennsylvania National Guard Associations (PNGAS) - View Letter of Support

The Commonwealth Foundation - View Policy Report and Blog Post on why 

Pennsylvania’s Healthcare Should Always be Crisis Ready


Americans for Prosperity-Pennsylvania - View letter of Support

Pennsylvania Rural Health Association - View letter of Support

Pennsylvania Association of Certified Nurse-Midwives - View letter of Support

Villanova University / Crozer-Chester Medical Center Nurse Anesthesia Program - View letter of Support

Pennsylvania Nurse Anesthetists Programs - View Letter of Support

Allegheny School of Anesthesia Program

University of Scranton School of Nurse Anesthesia Program

Cedar Crest College Nurse Anesthesia Program

Crozer-Chester Medical Center / Villanova University Nurse Anesthesia Program

Drexel University Nurse Anesthesia Program

Excela Health School Anesthesia Program

Frank J. Tornetta School of Anesthesia at Montgomery Hospital / La Salle University Nurse Anesthesia Program

Geisinger Health System / Bloomsburg University of Pa. Nurse Anesthesia Program

Thomas Jefferson University Jefferson School of Nursing Nurse Anesthesia Program

University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing Nurse Anesthesia Program

UPMC Hamot School of Anesthesia / Gannon University Program

York College of Pa. / WellSpan Health Nurse Anesthetist Program

The Commonwealth Foundation’s

Steve Bloom Guest column:

Eliminate barriers to crisis-ready health care

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Commentary by Brother Norman Hipps:

CRNAs deserve official designation in Pa.

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PANA’s non-partisan Political Action Committee (PAC) is supported by donations, not by member dues.  The PAC allows us to support the most qualified candidates who share our views. Help us make your voice heard by donating to the PANA PAC.



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CRNA DESignation fact sheet

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