Professional Purpose Statement

This program has been developed in cooperation with

Delegation Leader: Dr. Debbie Malina


A delegation of highly skilled professionals with the expertise and experience as Certified Nurse Anesthetists have been selected to exchange ideas and address common issues with their professional counterparts in Cambodia, under the auspices of the Citizen Ambassador Program of Cultural Vistas, a US non-profit NGO, with extensive experience in developing counterpart professional exchanges. This delegation has been developed in consultation with The American Association for Nurse Anesthesiology (AANA).

Our primary objective for this delegation is to gain an understanding and appreciation for the role of Nurses delivering anesthesia in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, Cambodia. We will accomplish this objective through dialog with colleagues, and through professional and cultural visits.

The following subjects are of particular interest to the delegation. These topics may be further refined to incorporate the specialized interest and expertise of the individual delegates.

Preliminary Topics of Discussion

  • Understand the role of the nurse anesthetist practice in Cambodia
  • Anesthesia delivery models and environments
  • The role of IFNA in developing the Nurse Anesthetist profession
  • Education and certification standards Continuing education programs
  • Most significant problems impacting anesthesia delivery
  • Current drug costs and shortages, if any, and how do healthcare providers adapt
  • Health Insurance, healthcare delivery, healthcare costs.
  • Challenges currently experienced in the Cambodian healthcare delivery system
    1. Impact of Covid
    2. Disparities in access and care.
    3. Educational requirements of providers
  • Differences between public and private hospitals
  • Challenges currently experienced in the Cambodian healthcare delivery system
    1. Impact of Covid
    2. Differences between public and private hospitals

It is intended that these exchanges will facilitate increased learning for both the host professional and for the U.S. delegation and will offer contributions of international understanding at the career and personal levels for all.

Dr. Debbie Malina will serve as the delegation Leader. Dr. Malina has led multiple international exchanges programs for Certified Nurse Anesthetists. Dr. Malina has provided guidance in the development of the topics of discussion listed above. Below is a brief biography for Dr. Malina.

Dr. Debbie Malina

Dr. Malina has been a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist for over 25 years. She is a former Region Director, Treasurer, and President (2011-12) of the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA). She is a past Lead Coordinator of the Nursing Organizations Alliance and has held numerous other state and national elected and appointed positions. She has been actively involved in leadership development, crisis management, team-building, and organizational health for both the AANA and state associations. Debbie has led international CRNA delegations to other countries where CRNAs from the US were able to come together with their overseas nurse anesthesia colleagues and other healthcare providers.

In addition to legal and business consulting, Debbie has practiced in a number of states and variety of healthcare settings, being an independent contractor since 2004. She recently was the interim director of surgical services for the busy 4-surgeon cosmetic surgery center. She has been a faculty member at 2 nurse anesthesia programs. She received her Master’s Degree in Anesthesiology from Barry University, an MBA from Madison University, and her Doctorate in Nursing Science (DNSc) from the University of TN Memphis. She has been a member of Sigma Theta Tau, and in 2015, Debbie was inducted as a Distinguished Fellow for Nursing in the National Academies of Practice.

In her personal life, Debbie, and her husband, both Ohio natives, are enjoying their new home of Hawaii, traveling, hiking, music, and being the parents of one adult child, a new daughter-in-law, and 4 kids each with 4 legs.