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ONA History at a Glance

From its beginnings as the Oregon State Association of Trained Nurses to the present, the Oregon Nurses Association has led the way for nurses and patients and made a difference in nursing practice, politics and labor.

Learn about your organization’s history and key accomplishments over the last century and more.”

Timeline of ONA's History and Accomplishments

  • 1904, a charter document was signed creating the state’s first professional organization for nurses called the Oregon State Association of Trained Nurses.
  • 1906, the name of the organization was changed to the Oregon State Graduate Nurses Association (OSGNA).
  • 1907, OSGNA began drafting what would become Oregon’s first Nurse Practice Act. The act became law in 1911 and was responsible for establishing the Oregon State Board of Nurse Examiners.

  • 1929, OSGNA led the way to amend the Oregon Nurse Practice Act to require compulsory registration.

  • 1936, OSGNA recommended the creation of a standardized eight hour work day for nurses and the organization became the Oregon State Nurses Association (OSNA).

  • 1950, OSNA (working with the Oregon Association of Hospitals), achieved nursing hours regulation and created a base salary for nurses.

  • 1954, OSNA negotiated its first contract in which nurses achieved a $15 per month pay increase.

  • 1957, the OSNA officially became the Oregon Nurses Association (ONA).

  • 1961, nurse leaders helped to pass House Bill 1360, giving Oregon’s nurses the right to become part of a union.

  • 1962, ONA settled its first collective bargaining agreement with Providence Hospital (now PPMC).

  • 1970, ONA formed the Nurse Political Action Committee to increase its effectiveness in the political process by supporting candidates and mobilizing nurse voters.

  • 1974, the National Labor Relations Board granted ONA the right to legally represent nurses for the purposes of collective bargaining.

  • 1979, ONA secured passage of House Bill 2806, giving nurse practitioners prescriptive authority and setting a standard for the nation.

  • 1980, ONA established the Oregon Nurses Foundation, a charitable arm of the organization that has provided thousands of dollars in scholarships to new nursing professionals.

  • 1992, ONA became a founding member of the new Oregon Rural Health Association.

  • 1993, ONA helped pass Senate Bill 479 which granted nurse practitioners hospital admitting privileges.

  • 1995, ONA established a monthly free immunization clinic staffed by volunteer nurses.

  • 1999, ONA helped gain recognition and Board of Nursing regulation for clinical nurse specialists.

  • 2001, ONA passed House Bill 2800, a unique nurse staffing law to protect both nurses and patients.

  • 2003, ONA helped clinical nurse specialists obtain prescriptive authority.

  • 2004, ONA celebrated 100 years of serving Oregon’s nursing professionals.

  • Between 2006 and 2012, ONA organized eight new bargaining units, increasing membership by more than 1,000 nurses.

  • 2007, ONA was recognized by Oregon AFL-CIO for organizing the most new members in the private sector.

  • 2007, ONA led in passage of House Bill 2022, legislation aimed at reducing violence and creating a safer environment for all health care professionals.

  • 2008, ONA helped found the National Federation of Nurses, a unique, federated national union for registered nurses, representing more than 40,000 nurses across the nation.

  • 2009, ONA lobbied for passage of House Bill 2009, a comprehensive health care delivery reform bill.

  • 2011, ONA lobbied for passage of House Bill 3650, to transform our health care delivery system for Medicaid patients.

  • 2013, ONA helped pass House Bill 2902, the first law in the U.S. to require insurance companies to reimburse NPs at the same rate as physicians when providing the same primary care or mental health service.

  • 2014, ONA voted to affiliate with the American Federation of Teachers (AFT).

  • 2015, ONA was recognized by the Oregon AFL-CIO for the largest new organizing victory in the private sector after organizing nurses at Providence Newberg Medical Center.

  • 2015, ONA was awarded accreditation from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) to provide and approve continuing nursing education activities.

  • 2015, ONA helped pass significant legislative updates that strengthened Oregon’s Hospital Nurse Staffing Law.

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Oregon Nurses Association
18765 SW Boones Ferry Rd. Suite 200, Tualatin, OR 97062
(503) 293-0011 or 800-634-3552 (Oregon Only)