Shad Westover, a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA), is the co-owner and director of anesthesia services for West Idaho Anesthesia LLP. Started in 2014 with a partner, West Idaho Anesthesia now employees seven full-time and four part-time CRNAs who provide anesthesia services at six facilities in the Treasure Valley area. In 2021, Westover received his Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice (DNAP) degree, where he had the opportunity to create a unique educational tool as his doctoral project. Working under the care of his doctoral advisors, Westover created an anesthesia simulation job shadow experience for students.
“I created this during COVID when students were having a very hard time getting job shadow opportunities due to all the restrictions,” Westover described.
The simulation allows students to participate in real-life scenarios that demonstrate all types of anesthesia, including general and regional. Sessions are limited to five to seven students who follow a nurse anesthesiologist and a simulated patient through the perioperative process; this is followed by a debriefing period when students can ask questions.
With his degree complete, Westover has now incorporated his doctoral project into his practice at West Idaho Anesthesia to give high school and college students in the area the opportunity to experience what it’s like to job shadow an anesthesiologist. This innovative program makes Westover a true visionary in his field. He stated: “It is more important than ever right now to make sure we are keeping students interested in the health care field.”