Nurse anesthesia student featured in national medical journal


Jennifer Harenberg

SRNA Yannick Macaulay performs jet ventilation on a patient with severe subglottic stenosis at Denver Health Level 1 Trauma Center, according to the AANA journal issue of Oct. 2021.

Yannick Macaulay was recently featured in the medical journal known as American Association for Nurse Anesthesiology (AANA). He is a Student Registered Nurse Anesthetist (SRNA) from Texas Wesleyan University’s Graduate Program of Nurse Anesthesia (GPNA).

Macaulay said the practice that garnered him attention from the medical journal was not anything new or completely innovative, rather a long-established yet rare procedure saved for patients who have a difficult airway to protect.

Macaulay described that in a normal person’s airway, one can see the vocal cords and the airway is right there. But going past below the vocal cord, there can be a narrowing called stenosis.

“So we have to protect your airway with a breathing tube, but with a patient with subglottic stenosis, if you were to intubate a patient like this, you won’t be able to pass the bridge below the vocal cords. So that was the reason why we were trying to get into that narrow airway and try to dilate it out,” he said.

Macaulay said he feels good about his feature in the medical journal and he knew he wouldn’t have to show it off. The AANA medical journal is a common subscription for most of his professors, so he knew they would receive it in either mail or email format.

“Instructors and professors emailed me and said, ‘Congratulations!’ and I had no idea what they were talking about, I was like, ‘ah, I guess thanks?’ but then a co-worker actually sent me a picture and said, ‘Hey, guess what I got in the mail? I’m gonna need you to sign it when I come to work.’ And I was like, ‘Ah, that ties it together!’” he said.

Dr. Jennifer Harenberg is a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA), and Macaulay’s clinical coordinator for Texas Wesleyan’s GPNA at Denver Health Medical Center. She took the picture that ended up on the front page of the AANA journal.

“I’m so proud of Yannick for being featured in our national journal. This was his first jet ventilation case and he handled it so well. The ENT surgeon was so impressed with him and the patient did great,” she wrote.

Harenberg notes that the Texas Wesleyan GPNA program stands out in doing an amazing job of educating and preparing the nurse anesthesia graduate students for their clinical assignments across the country; Denver Health from Denver, Colorado included.

Macaulay was happy to see Harenberg’s photo of him featured in the national journal. “It makes you feel like the work that you do is kind of recognized and all this attention that you get from your co-workers or family,” he said. “Clinical coordinators come up to you and say, ‘Hey, your picture that was submitted was published on the cover.’ Yeah, it makes you feel great.”


Screenshot of AANA public details about latest journal issue, featuring Yannick Macaulay on the front cover doing a rare procedure. (Angela Castillo)