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Wake Forest Baptist’s Nurse Anesthesia Program is First in U.S. to Receive Accreditation from International Federation

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – June 25, 2013 – Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center’s Nurse Anesthesia Program has become the first program in the United States and only the second in the world to be accredited by the International Federation of Nurse Anesthetists (IFNA).

Accreditation means that the master’s degree program at Wake Forest Baptist complies with the IFNA’s standards for educating nurse anesthetists, which have been endorsed by the nonprofit association’s member organizations in 36 countries. The status, which is valid for five years, was awarded following submission of a self-study by Wake Forest Baptist and an on-site visit by IFNA representatives.

“We are honored beyond words that we have been granted full accreditation by the IFNA,” said Michael Rieker, D.P.N. (Doctor of Nursing Practice), director of the Wake Forest Baptist program. “This recognizes our longstanding commitment to and support of global education and education standards.”

The Nurse Anesthesia Program at Wake Forest Baptist was founded in 1942, making it the oldest in North Carolina and one of the oldest in the nation. It was ranked No. 7 among the country’s programs in the most recent ratings by U.S. News & World Report. The program provides international learning opportunities for students and was instrumental in the development of and has provided support for an anesthesia training program in Ghana.

The IFNA, founded in 1989, is dedicated to the advancement of educational standards and practices that advance the art and science of anesthesiology and thereby support and enhance quality anesthesia care worldwide. Its program-approval process has three levels: registration, recognition and accreditation. Last year, the nurse anesthesia program at Hospital Salpetriere in Paris became the first to achieve IFNA accreditation.

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The Department of Anesthesiology provided more than 43,000 anesthetics in 2 hospitals last year. In addition to providing anesthesia care for surgeries performed at North Carolina Baptist Hospitals (NCBH), the department provides all anesthetic coverage for the obstetric suite plus gynecological surgery at Forsyth Memorial Hospital.

Last Updated: 06-24-2013
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