Anesthesiologist Job Description
Anesthesiologists administer drugs that reduce (or even eliminate) the pain a patient might feel during surgery or other medical procedures.
Anesthesiologists normally remain by a patient’s side during surgery, where they adjust the anesthetic levels throughout the process and monitor the patient’s vital signs to ensure that no complications are occurring as the result of the surgery or anesthesia.
It’s very common for anesthesiologists to consult with a patient before they undergo an operation to explain the process and make sure that no allergies or existing medical conditions would conflict with the anesthesia.
Responsibilities for anesthesiologist jobs include:
- Administering anesthesia through spinal, intravenous, caudal, or local methods.
- Determining when patients stabilized enough to be moved after an operation.
- Working with surgeons during an operation to administer anesthetics in a manner that won’t disrupt the procedure.
Work Environment and Schedule
Anesthesiologists work in hospitals and doctor’s offices. During operations, they may be required to stand for long periods of time.
Work hours for anesthesiologists are normally very long and irregular. Because surgeries happen around the clock, many people employed in this profession work very long shifts (including nights and weekends).
Many anesthesiologists are also on call at all times, meaning they may have to drop everything at any given time and head to the hospital for an emergency.
How to Become an Anesthesiologist
Like all doctors, anesthesiologists have to complete very demanding training and education requirements. Four years of undergraduate school, four years of medical school, and a four year residency program in anesthesiology is required.
To learn more about licensing requirements and training programs, visit the American Board of Anesthesiology’s website.
Anesthesiologists are placed into a lot of stressful situations, which requires a level head and a great deal of patience.
Empathy and strong communication skills are required while explaining procedures to patients who are going through a traumatic procedure.
Being well organized and demonstrating strong problem solving skills are important during an operation. Sometimes, decisions have to be made very quickly to save a patient’s life.
There are currently 691,000 anesthesiologists in the United States, with 30,510 new anesthesiologist job openings created each year.
Anesthesiologist jobs are not expected to see much growth beyond their current levels in the next decade.
Anesthesiologist salaries can vary depending on your experience, the location, company, industry, and benefits provided. Nationwide, most anesthesiologists make between $166,400+ per year, or $80+ per hour.