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New partnership, new opportunities

By Hope H. Davis

A new collaboration in Maryland will lead to career mobility for health care workers.

This summer, students in Maryland took their first step toward becoming anesthesia technologists. Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC) and Johns Hopkins Health System (JHHS) — one of the leading health care systems in the country — recently collaborated to create a new anesthesia technology program unlike any within the state or region.

The program allows students from hospitals within JHHS, as well as those within the community looking to enter an allied health career track, to earn an associate of applied science degree. That credential is mandated by the American Society of Anesthesia Technicians and Technologists (ASATT), the organization responsible for maintaining the competency standards of technologists and technicians in all areas of anesthesia.

The anesthesia technology program provides courses that offer the full range of clinical and instructional experience to practice as an anesthesia technologist. Graduates of the program are eligible for certification by ASATT. Students within the program take courses taught by experienced instructors with most being employed by the JHHS as anesthesia technologists, nurse anesthetists and anesthesiologists.

“Working collaboratively with Johns Hopkins has allowed us to develop a high quality educational program that will provide new opportunities for those in our community,” CCBC President Sandra Kurtinitis said. “With this being the first such program in Maryland, it will provide access to an occupation not easily obtained within the state and benefit both job seekers as well as employers.”

Anesthesia technologists are an important member of the anesthesia patient care team. They assist licensed anesthesia providers in the preparation and application of various types of equipment required for the delivery of anesthesia. They work in a variety of clinical settings such as operating rooms, intensive care units, dental suites, emergency rooms and more.

“I am appreciative to Johns Hopkins and CCBC for the opportunity to participate in this program,” student Andrea Ethridge said. “This program is affording me a far better outlook on job performance; and, through on-the-job training, showing me how I can better assist patients and staff in my department.”

The first class will graduate next spring.


Hope H. Davis

is the director of media relations at Community College of Baltimore County.