Ep 191: Decreasing Healthcare Disparity Through Improved Diversity


You’ve probably already noticed that most of our colleagues in nurse anesthesia look pretty similar. Through innovation and educational pipelines, the industry is working to improve the diversity in our workforce, which will lead to better healthcare outcomes for all. Sonya Moore, DNP, CRNA, joins the show to talk about her experiences as a minority in healthcare and how she’s helping drive change through her LEAP program.

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

On This Episode:

When you think about all the ways to improve the care each patient receives, one way we can immediately make an impact is by improving diversity in nurse anesthesia. Having a variety of backgrounds and perspectives will lead to better healthcare options for all.

So how do we do that?

It’s a great question and one that Sonya Moore, DNP, CRNA, is trying to address through her Leadership Excel and Achievement Program. As a CRNA for nearly 25 years and one that first learned about this profession through an internship early in life, Moore noticed the lack of diversity in every health setting she worked in and she wanted to change that.

Today we’ll talk to her about how innovation can lead us to improve this area of our profession as well as the education pipeline. Learn more about her experience in the industry and what the LEAP program is all about.

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

  • How she became interested in anesthesia while growing up in the inner-city.
  • The lack of diversity she noticed in every setting she worked in early on and how that motivated her to stick to the profession.
  • The different systemic barriers that make it more difficult for minorities.
  • Why a diverse workforce improves healthcare for everyone.
  • What the Leadership Excel and Achievement Program (LEAP) is and why she created it.
  • Why the program might be more affordable and accessible than you might think.
  • Diversity in the educational system.

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.

[5:25] – Background on Sonja

[7:21] – Getting started in anesthesia

[14:28] – Systemic barriers

[17:29] – Importance of a diverse workforce

[22:30] – Finding common ground

[30:41] – The LEAP program

[38:46] – How the program works

[42:47] – Program costs and acceptance rates

[48:13] – Final thoughts


To learn more about the Emma Kate fundraiser event:  https://halosofthestcroixvalley.com/ 


“What led me to keep doing the work was everywhere I went to work, I was the only minority. Whether it was a rural area…or a major care team model at a teaching facility, I was still the only one or maybe there were a couple more minorities there.”

-Sonya Moore, DNP, CRNA





CRNA Careers

Ep 193: A Nurse for Sheriff? History Could Be Made

Nurses are uniquely qualified for the responsibilities that come with holding a public office, which is why we’re seeing more and more campaigning. But did you ever think about running for sheriff? Caitlin Sepeda is a registered nurse in Massachusetts that’s doing just that and today she joins the show to tell us about her path to this point and why she hopes to make history.


Ep 192: Effective Federal Advocacy Starts at Home

The great thing about being an advocate for nurse anesthetists is that anyone can have an impact no matter where they live. Many federal legislators starts locally so there are opportunities to create relationships early and close to home. Sarah Tweedy, CRNA, got a first-hand look at working with legislators as a student and has carried that interest into her young professional career. Find out what she’s learned about advocacy and how best to build relationships with policy-makers.

Current Events

Ep 190: Using Neuroscience for Daily Direction and Coping Mechanisms

Each of us faces our own battles every day, some of which are much more difficult than others. No matter what mental health challenges you’re dealing with, finding ways to manage everything are so important for everyone. Susie Newell, DNP, CRNA, wrote a book recently about creating activities and mindsets to help people cope with mental issues and it’s all focused on neuroscience. She joins us today to share her research and what she’s learned during the publishing process.




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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.