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    Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice
    Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice

    Watch this video to learn more about the Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice (DNAP) program.

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Home > Majors and Programs > Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice
  • Herbert W. Boyer School of Natural Sciences, Mathematics and Computing
    and Excela Health School of Anesthesia

    Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice

    The Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice (DNAP) program is committed to offering professional graduate education for master’s degree-prepared CRNAs.  The program:

    • Develops motivational leaders ready to meet the challenges needed to advance anesthesia practice.
    • Develops CRNAs with superior levels of knowledge in anesthesia theory and practice.
    • Establishes CRNAs who are proficient in evidence-based practice initiation leading to practice change.
    • Prepares CRNA leaders for the future with the knowledge and skills to meet the demands of a rapidly changing health care system.

    The DNAP will prepare the CRNA to serve in leadership roles within the health care system. The curriculum will promote the use of evidence-based practice as a means to prioritize direction for process change. The learner will manage a capstone project that will build as the learner progresses through each consecutive class. Projects will focus on anesthesia clinical practice, educational presentation or management improvement strategies.

    The small class size will allow for individualized instruction. A one-on-one adviser will assist the learner in developing scholarly work that will build skills for future projects. The advisers will be seasoned faculty who have been in anesthesia practice for many years, serving in multiple roles, including military, leadership and clinical practice. 


    Courses Required for Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice (30 credits):

    DNAP 800 Evidence-Based Practice  - 3 credits
    DNAP 810 US Health Care Systems - 3 credits
    DNAP 820 Research Methods - 3 credits
    DNAP 830 Risk Management and Patient Safety - 3 credits
    DNAP 840 Ethics - 3 credits
    DNAP 850 Leadership - 3 credits
    DNAP 860 Health Care Economics  - 3 credits
    DNAP 870 Health Care Informatics - 3 credits
    DNAP 900 Capstone I - 2 credits
    DNAP 910 Capstone II - 2 credits
    DNAP 920 Capstone III- 2 credits

    Course Format 
    Classes will be offered cohort-style with hybrid presentation.  Students will be required to attend one week of intensive class meetings on campus each semester.  Students will then communicate with faculty online for the completion of the course.  Sessions will begin each August offering a small class size.

    Fall 2013 Cohort On-Campus Class Dates 

    Orientation: Sunday, August 18th 1-6pm Dupre Science Center, Room S201
    Fall 2013: Aug. 19-23 
    Spring 2014: Jan. 6-10
    Summer 2014: May 12-14
    Fall 2014: Aug. 18-22
    Spring 2015: Jan 5-9
    Summer 2015: May 11-13
    Fall 2015: TBD


      Semester         Course #    Credits              Course Name 
     Fall Year 1          DNAP 800       
     DNAP 810
     Evidence-Based Practice
     US Health Care Systems
     Spring Year 1          DNAP 820
     DNAP 830
     Research Methods
     Risk Management and Patient Safety        
     Summer Year 1  DNAP 840 3

     Fall Year 2  DNAP 900
     DNAP 850
     Capstone I
     Spring Year 2  DNAP 860
     DNAP 870
     Health Care Economics       
     Health Care Informatics
     Summer Year 2
     Fall Year 3
     DNAP 910
     DNAP 920
     Capstone II
     Capstone III




    DNAP 800: Evidence-Based Practice                                
    This course will provide a context for the student in understanding the value of evidence-based practice in health care. The student will come to understand their role in the use of current best practice evidence in making clinical decisions. The student will be exposed to the role of an evidence hierarchy as it relates to the levels of evidence regarding effectiveness of an intervention. Evidence appraisal, evidence implementation and evaluation of clinical outcomes will also be studied. 

    DNAP 810: U.S. Health Care Systems            
    A comprehensive overview of U.S. health care systems covering structure, finance, governance, personnel, history and cultural values. Examination of critical challenges and interactions with economic, technological, political and social forces to include the health care systems’ response to these influences. 

    DNAP 820: Research Methods                                               
    This course examines strategies for gathering and organizing data and undertaking statistical data analysis in health care environments. Introduction to statistical reasoning and interpretation with data analysis using Microsoft Excel. 

    DNAP 830: Risk Management and Patient Safety       
    This course explains the theoretical basis of patient safety and human error. In addition, the role of risk management will be studied in relationship to current standards for patient safety. The course will also include error investigation and analysis, as well as emphasizing the role of multi-disciplinary teamwork and crisis management in anesthesia. 

    DNAP 840: Ethics                                                                     
    This ethics seminar examines the dimensions of business activity commonly referred to as business ethics from a leadership perspective. Students will investigate five basic ethical approaches (Utilitarian, Rights, Fairness/Justice, Virtue and Common-Good).  Students will also examine the Roman Catholic social teaching on social justice and discuss how it informs or conflicts with the five basic approaches listed above.  Additionally, this course will focus on four key principles of Benedictine thought: stability, community, hospitality and stewardship.

    DNAP 850: Leadership    
    This course is designed to help students both explore the concept of leadership as well as to assess and develop their own leadership skills.  The perspective underlying this course is that leadership is (a) contextual in nature and (b) requires the mastery of multiple behaviors.  Both of these can only be accomplished through a better understanding of self, others and one’s context.  Thus, there will be a heavy introspective and reflective component to the course. 

    DNAP 860: Health Care Economics 
    An introduction to economic and public policy factors that affect health care systems. Provides a review of relevant economic concepts and covers topics such as demand for health services, health care provider behavior, implications of insurance strategies, cost containment, health technologies and government regulations. Students will also conduct a cost-effectiveness study to understand how cost-effectiveness strategies can inform decision-making.

    DNAP 870: Health Care Informatics       
    This interdisciplinary course in health care informatics is based upon computer and information sciences, as well as cognitive and decisional factors that pertain to the business of health care. Using a multi-disciplinary approach, the student will gain knowledge and skills in planning, collecting, analyzing, storing and disseminating health care data and information. In addition, the student will gain an understanding of methods and techniques of enhancing health care data management systems.

    DNAP 900: Capstone I                                                           
    DNAP 910: Capstone II   
    DNAP 920: Capstone III
    The Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice (DNAP) will culminate in the successful completion of a faculty-approved capstone project relevant to the field of health care and anesthesia. The capstone project will be carried out over several semesters. For the project the student will plan the project by identifying an area of interest, developing data collection strategies, gathering and analyzing the data, as well as disseminating the findings of the project. The student will also be expected to prepare the completed study in a format suitable for publication in a scholarly journal.


    1) Completed online application
    2) Official transcripts from all graduate colleges attended
    3) Three letters of recommendation
    4) Curriculum vitae
    5) Interview

    All application materials should be mailed directly to: School of Anesthesia, One Mellon Drive, Latrobe, PA 15650 


    1) Current certification as a registered nurse anesthetist
    2) Certification/recertification throughout the length of the doctoral program
    3) GPA of 3.25 of higher in a related master’s degree program
    4) Completion of at least 3 credits in graduate-level research
    5) Basic computer skills in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint