Ep 140: Free Open Access MEDucation: Leveraging Social Media & Podcasting for Learning

The beauty of technology is that information is accessible to anyone, anywhere, and the ability to learn is right there at our fingertips. Thanks to FOAM (Free Open Access Meducation), CRNAs are able to pull from all types of resources to continue education and improve their anesthesia skills. To help us understand what is available and how these digital platforms are giving content creators an outlet, we’ve asked Jon Lowrance, MSN, CRNA, the producer at Anesthesia Guidebook, to join us on the show.  

Click the timestamps below to help you navigate through the many topics we discussed.

On This Episode:

While the rise of digital technology and social media has brought plenty of negative effects, there’s so much good that comes from the ability to find information on just about anything you can imagine. Maybe some of it is inaccurate, but SRNAs and CRNAs can research and learn so much about the industry thanks to so many people putting time and effort into creating content for everyone to use.

One of those people is Jon Lowrance, MSN, CRNA. He produces the Anesthesia Guidebook, which a podcast that aims to be the go-to guide for providers looking to master their craft. You can quickly scroll through their feed and see the great range of topics they cover on the show.

We wanted him to come on to discuss this idea of leveraging social media and podcasting to help CRNAs with their continuing education. It’s an area that will continue to evolve as technology and our habits change. There’s a lot to discuss and plenty to learn about this new-age research so make sure you use the references below to get even more info.

As you get started on the episode, keep an ear out for these topics:

  • Working closely with Doctoral students
  • The different outlets CRNAs have to learn and research now.
  • Free open-access meducation (FOAM)
  • What can we do to ensure accuracy and catch misinformation?
  • The opportunity for SRNAs to create content and find a platform.
  • Free content vs charging for it
  • The way learning is changing due to technology.

Check it out the interview at the top of the page and use the timestamps to help you navigate through the many topics we discussed.

2:49 – Background on Jon

9:06 – The educational role of podcasting

14:50 – Asynchronous learning programs

18:05 – Peer review standards

24:03 – Addressing outdated content

28:52 – Charging for content

37:29 – Teaching about CRNA history

40:29 – Learning by audio

47:40 – Closing thoughts

50:47 – Lightning round


Additional Resources Mentioned on the Show

  1. Chan, T. M., Stehman, C., Gottlieb, M., & Thoma, B. (2020). A short history of free open access medical education. the past, present, and future.ATS scholar1(2), 87-100. Retrieved from https://www.atsjournals.org/doi/pdf/10.34197/ats-scholar.2020-0014PS 


  1. Andrejco, K. (2017). Social Media in Nurse Anesthesia: A Model of a Reproducible Educational Podcast.AANA journal85(1). Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/313877337_Social_Media_in_Nurse_Anesthesia_A_Model_of_a_Reproducible_Educational_Podcast


  1. Writing in the Sciences, by Kristin Sainani, PhD.This is the professional writing course offered through Stanford University… a prime example of a university recognizing the value of Free Open Access Medical education (FOAM).  https://www.coursera.org/learn/sciwrite


If you’ve got something to say or if there’s an angle that you want to take, it’s not all been done. There’s a space for the next wave of content producers to come into social media to create content or the next podcast or whatever it might be.

-Jon Lowrance, MSN, CRNA





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J. Cross CRNA
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This podcast is very well put together. I love the hosts Sharon & Jeremy, they do a fantastic job at presenting topics as well as getting great speakers on the show! This is my morning commute podcast everyday! Thank you for all that you do!
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I enjoy listening every morning. Great content and always a pleasure to learn something new.
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I started listening to this podcast religiously early on in my CRNA journey, a year before applying to CRNA school. The content in this podcast was one of my most helpful resources for getting into my first choice school, Wake Forest! It has also been a huge motivator for getting involved with the AANA now and throughout my career. I highly recommend this podcast to every prospective CRNA I meet.
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I appreciate hearing the latest and greatest in the world of Nurse Anesthesiology while also getting Class B credits. Just listen on your commute for a win/win experience. I love the perspectives from Jeremy and Sharon who both ask varied and insightful questions!
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If you’re a CRNA or any medical professional, I highly recommend giving this podcast a listen. Hosts have a great rapport.