Orana's History


The first hospital in the region was established at Fort Vancouver, under the British Flag. This hospital was staffed by the Sisters of Providence. They would later move the hospital across the Columbia River and St. Vincent's Hospital would become the first hospital in Oregon. established at St. Vincent's Hospital in Portland, Oregon by Agnes McGee. This school would continue until 1956. placement service in the state.


Sister Andrew Moreau, a nurse, was giving anesthesia at St. Vincent's Hospital. It is likely that others in the state were also doing anesthesia, but she is the first documentable nurse giving anesthesia in Oregon. In 1909, the first school of Nurse Anesthesia, in the country, was opened at St. Vincent's hospital.


The organizational first meeting for the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists is held in Lakeview Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio.


November 16, 1935 the organizational meeting of the Oregon Association of Nurse Anesthetists is held. Aimee Doerr is elected the first president. They form an executive and membership committee, and resolve to join the national association. The number of attendees at the second meeting, held in December is eighteen. By the end of the first year, the organization records that the bank account is $75.17. Their expenses included 147.00 to national for the initiation fee and dues, $.3.35 for stationary and postage and $1.50 for memographing.


The first edition of the OANAgram (using that title) is published by Josephine Bunch. A few pearls from that edition: The national convention was held the prior month in Toronto, Canada There were 39 schools of nurse anesthesia nationwide. A fund raising dinner will be held at the home of the president, admission is $.50, fifty cents!

WWII Nurses, with anesthesia training, are drafted into the army, but just as general duty nurses. This becomes an issue for many nurse anesthetists. Annie Mealer, an army nurse, and an anesthetist, is a Japanese POW for 3 years. Marie K.Fast, nurse anesthetist and Mennonite Relief worker is killed escorting Yougoslavian refugees home from Egypt. Attendence at the meetings sometimes lags due to gas rationing and shortages One lecture includes the following: “interesting and instructive lecture presented .....covering civilian activity and responsibility during air raids and incendiary bombing.


Men are admitted to the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists. Earlier attempts to admit men in ’37, ’42 and ’45 were rebuffed.


The OANA has a committee that negotiates with the Hospital Association regarding salaries for nurse anesthetists. They also ran a


Henry Knapp and his wife are mentioned in the OANAgram. Henry is the first male to be mention in the OANAgram, he may be the first male member of the OANA.


The first all male class of CRNA’s graduates from Walter Reed, reflecting the military’s need for male CRNA’s for the Vietnam war. 10 nurses were killed in Vietnam, 2 were CRNAs Kenneth R. Shoemaker and Jerome Edwin Olmsted Killed together in a EVAC transport plane.


First master’s program was started by Joyce Kelley, at the Kaiser Permnante Program at California State University.