Timeline of AANA History, 1980s

The Guidelines for the Practice of the Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist were adopted.
The Helen Lamb Outstanding Educator Award was first presented to Joyce Kelly, CRNA.
The AANA NewsBulletin was issued monthly.
The public relations film, A Different Kind of Nurse, was launched at the Spring Assembly of States and won a Golden Trumpet Award from the Publicity Club of Chicago in 1981.
The Nurse Anesthesia Manpower Study was begun.
The first all-mail ballot had the highest voter participation—39 percent—of any election since mail balloting was introduced.
The AANA Education and Research Foundation (now the AANA Foundation) was created.
The Public Relations Recognition Award was first presented to the Nebraska Association of Nurse Anesthetists.
The 50th Anniversary of the AANA was celebrated.
The Board of Directors voted to ban smoking at the Annual Meeting educational sessions.
The Policy Statement on Nurse Anesthetists and Reimbursement was adopted.
Ira Gunn, CRNA, MLN, was the first CRNA named a Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing.
Position Statement 3.1 The Existence of State Boards of Nursing was adopted.
The Board of Directors approved the title of Education Consultant Emeritus for Ruth Satterfield, CRNA, and Ira Gunn, CRNA, MLN, FAAN.
A registration fee of $50 was initiated for the Assembly of School Faculty and the Fall Assembly of States.
The AANA Board of Directors’ Statement for Minimum Educational Preparation for Entering a Nurse Anesthesia Educational Program/School endorsed a minimum of a baccalaureate degree and that nurse anesthesia education should be at the post baccalaureate level by 1986. 
The following position statments were adopted:
  • Position Statement 1.5 Minimum Educational Preparation for Entering a Nurse Anesthesia Educational Program
  • Position Statement 3.4 The Establishment of a Credentialing Center for Nursing
The first AANA Education and Research Foundation research grant was awarded in the amount of $500.
The Board of Directors appointed John Garde, CRNA, MS, as executive director after Nancy Fevold’s resignation.
The 50th Annual Meeting of the AANA was held.
The CRNA-PAC was established.
The AANA filed a neutral amicus curiae brief in Jefferson Parish Hospital v Hyde; the last amicus brief prior to that was filed in 1934. (Read the Legal Briefs column about the brief)
Quiet Dialogues and Silent Victories, 30- and 60-second public service announcements about CRNAs, were filmed at Detroit Receiving Hospital using Anesthesia Department staff and students instead of actors.
Direct reimbursement legislation for CRNAs was introduced in the Senate by Senators Matsunaga, Inouye, and Pell.
The Ad Hoc Committee on Chemical Dependency was established.
Federal funds were appropriated for the first time for nurse anesthetist traineeships.
Gene Blumenreich, JD, wrote his first Legal Briefs column for the August issue of the AANA Journal. He would go on to write a total of 96 columns before retiring as AANA's legal counsel in 2011.
The first AANA Journal article on AIDS was published.
CRNAs Meet the Press, a 17-minute video on talking to the media, was made available.
The AANA installed a toll free phone line for members to hear daily prerecorded messages on the latest legislative news.
The Anesthesia and Patient Responsibility brochure was published.
The AANA “pass through” provision in HR 4170, the Deficit Reduction Act of 1984, became law. The amendment provided for a pass-through of costs incurred by hospitals for anesthesia services provided by CRNAs.
The Research in Action Award was first presented to Christine M. Suess, CRNA. The award was given through 1995.
Active membership categories reflecting certification status were adopted: certified, recertified, non-recertified, life, and emeritus.
An AANA Public Relations campaign won first place in one of three categories of the American Academy of Nursing Media Award competition.
Glenn, Nyhan & Associates took over the administration of the AANA insurance program, replacing March & McLennan.
The following position statements were adopted:
  • Position Statement 1.7 Chemical Dependency
  • Position Statement 2.4 Administration of Nitrous Oxide by Qualified Anesthesia Providers
  • Position Statement 3.6 Administration of Intradermal Local Anesthetics by Registered Nurses Providers
In Bahn v. NME Hospitals, Inc., the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that under certain circumstances CRNAs working with physicians other than anesthesiologists can compete with anesthesiologists and thus have standing to bring a federal antitrust suit under circumstances prescribed in antitrust law.
The brochure A Tradition of Quality Care: Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists was published.
The Council on Accreditation received recognition from the Council on Postsecondary Accreditation (COPA). 
The AANA donated to the Vietnam Women’s Memorial Project.
The Long Range Planning Committee recommended that all nurse anesthesia programs should be at the master’s degree level; this would not be implemented until 1998.
The following position statements were adopted:
  • Position Statement 2.8 Provision of Pain Relief by Medication Administered via Continuous Epidural, Intrathecal, Intrapleural, Peripheral Nerve Catheters, or Other Pain Relief Devices
  • Position Statement 3.5 Endorsement of the American Nurses Association Resolution on the Associate and Professional Nurse Titles
Congress passed legislation providing CRNAs direct reimbursement under Medicare Part B, making nurse anesthesia the first nursing specialty/nonphysician group to be accorded direct reimbursement rights under the Medicare program.
The Board of Directors endorsed the Harvard Patient Monitoring Standards.
In Oltz v. St. Peters Hospital, nurse anesthetist Tafford Oltz proved in the Federal Court in Montana that hospital administrators and anesthesiologists conspired to dismiss him from his clinical privileges.
The Clinical Anesthesia Practitioner Award was first presented to Carolyn Nicholson, CRNA.
The PR Department held the first AANA photo contest; the theme was CRNAs in Action.
AANA's computer system was brought in-house.
The Ad Hoc Committee on Chemical Dependency was made a standing committee, and the name was changed to Peer Assistance Committee.
The Peer Assistance Hotline was established.
The following position statements were adopted:
  • Position Statement 1.3 Oppositions to Fixed Ratios of CRNAs to Anesthesiologists
  • Position Statement 1.6 Grandfathering Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists
  • Position Statement 2.1 The Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist in Alternative Practice Settings
  • Position Statement 2.9 Removal of Epidural Catheters
  • Position Statement 3.2 Recognition of Nurse Anesthetists by State Boards of Nursing
  • Position Statement 3.3 Model Guidelines for Developing Language Governing the Practice of Nurse Anesthesia Under Nursing Practice Act or Board of Nursing Rules or Regulations

The AANA partnered with the National Association of Broadcasters to produce a 30-second TV public service announcement titled, “Drugs Don’t Work on the Job,” with the message that street drugs and anesthesia don’t mix.

Meeting management activities were brought in-house and  the Department of Programs and Meeting Services was created.
The Council on Certification of Nurse Anesthetists conducted its first Professional Practice Analysis.
The following positions statements were adopted:
  • Position Statement 1.1 The Practice of Anesthesia
  • Position Statement 1.2: Relationship Between Health Care Professionals
  • Position Statement 1.4 The Role of the Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist in Organizational Management
  • Position Statement 2.5 Preparedness for the Treatment of Malignant Hyperthermia
  • Position Statement 2.10 Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists’ Utilization of Invasive Monitoring Techniques
The Risk Management Guide for Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists was published.
The Uniformed Services CRNA Task Force was created.
Formation of the AANA subsidiaries Anesthesia Professional Liability Services (Anesthesia Plus or A+, now called AANA Insurance Services) and AANA Publishing, Inc. (API) was approved by the Board of Directors.  The insurance agency opened and API first met in 1989.
The Council on Nurse Anesthesia Practice was renamed the Council for Public Interest in Anesthesia.
Smoking was banned in the executive office.
The Practice Committee was changed from an ad hoc to a standing committee.
The AANA participated in a Centers for Disease Control pilot study to determine the feasibility of doing a national study on morbidity and mortality in anesthesia.
The AANA Education and Reserach Foundation's Friends for Life endowment program was begun.
The Government Affairs Department was restructured into two distinct areas – state and federal.
The following positions statements were adopted:
  • Position Statement 2.2 Qualified Providers of Conscious Sedation
  • Position Statement 2.3 The Separation of Operator/Anesthetist Responsibilities
The first Joint Committee Conference was held in Rosemont, Ill.
Direct reimbursement for CRNAs under Medicare Part B was implemented.
Position Statement 2.7 Guidelines for Obstetrical Epidural Anesthesia Services was adopted.
Watchful Care: A History of America’s Nurse Anesthetists was published by the AANA.
The Practice Committee’s Regional Anesthesia Needs Assessment Survey was undertaken.
The first Anesthesia College Bowl was held at the Annual Meeting.
The Face Behind the Mask, a 14-minute slide/audiocassette program, was developed for recruitment purposes and to provide basic information on nurse anesthetists to the general public.
Nurse anesthesia was named one of the 25 hottest careers by Working Woman magazine.
The Professional Practice Manual for the Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist was published.
A patient monitoring standard was added to the Standards for Nurse Anesthesia Practice.
The National Commission on Nurse Anesthesia Education was formed.
AANA published:
  • Guidelines for Infection Control in Anesthesia
  • Professional and Legal Issues in Nurse Anesthesia Practice
  • Qualifications and Capabilities of the Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist
The first AANA Education and Research Foundation Poster Session was held at the Annual Meeting with two posters.
Position Statement 1.8 Education of Nurse Anesthetists at the Graduate Level was adopted.
The AANA Education and Research Foundation Fellowship Program began.
The First-Timers Ribbon was first given at the Annual Meeting.