Registered Nurse Assistant to the Anaesthetist

In 2012 the Medical Sciences Council of New Zealand and the Nursing Council of New Zealand released a joint communications statement on anaesthetic nursing.  Under the direction of this joint communication statement ‘the Perioperative Nurses College of the New Zealand Nurses Organisation has agreed to develop a definition and competencies/skills/standards for anaesthetic nurses’. This resulted in the Perioperative Nurses College developing a Skills & Knowledge Framework for the Registered Nurse Assistant to the Anaesthetist (RNAA). This consultation document was widely circulated to Key Stakeholders in April 2014.

There is no specific nursing course which builds upon holistic comprehensive nursing knowledge in the field of registered nurse assistant to the anaesthetist and incorporates the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists (2012) PS08 document ‘Recommendations on the Assistant to the Anaesthetist’. To address this gap the Auckland University of Technology will be piloting a Certificate of Proficiency, Registered Nurse Assistant to the Anaesthetist, 30-point one year paper through their post graduate nursing programme in early 2015. To make enquires about the Certificate of Proficiency RNAA course please contact

There is considerable interest from nursing and the perioperative community regarding the assistant to the anaesthetist field of nursing. This PNC web link is designed to provide information on nursing regulation in relation to the nurse assistant to the anaesthetist, workforce issues and RNAA knowledge and skills criteria. The ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ Fact Sheet will continue to be updated as well adding newsletters and promotional flyers.

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