Dr. Noel Beckford announced his retirement from WOC at the end of the year.

Dr. Noel Beckford, a local anesthesiologist with Washington Orthopaedic Center (WOC), is retiring at the end of 2020 after providing anesthesia services for 31 years.

Beckford was one of the first anesthesia providers when WOC was built in 1994 and opened the first physician-owned Ambulatory Surgery Center (ASC) in Washington, where he serves as the director of anesthesia.

Beckford received his medical degree in New York City and then completed his internship and residency in Connecticut at Bridgeport Hospital — where he became chief resident of anesthesiology in 1988.

Before settling in Centralia in the 1990s, first working for Providence Centralia Hospital, he spent a year working locums — temporary positions, allowing him to see the country. He also founded the Southwest Washington Anesthesia Group with fellow anesthesiologists to help provide services to facilities throughout the region. 

“Dr. Beckford was the first anesthesiologist at Washington Orthopaedic Center to utilize an ultrasound machine to perform anesthetic nerve blocks,” stated a press release from WOC. “He exclusively managed anesthesia services for every total joint procedure performed at the ASC for the initial two years total joint procedures were performed at WOC, and was involved in the coordination of, and then caring for, our first outpatient total hip replacement in the ASC.”

Invested in the act of serving others, Beckford has joined other providers with Washington Orthopaedic Center on mission trips to Nicaragua.

Retired orthopedic surgeon Dr. Keith Anderson worked with Beckford at Providence Centralia Hospital and was impressed with his work, saying: “his patients woke up quickly, alert, and comfortable, rather than nauseated and groggy as was the case with many other anesthesiologists at the time.”

Beckford’s thorough work made it easier for surgeons and nursing staff to better care for their patients both during and after surgery. 

Fellow WOC employees have described Beckford as a man of few words who is typically quiet with a keen sense of humor and quick wit. He enjoys gardening, traveling and is an avid airplane pilot and bicyclist.

“We will sincerely miss Dr. Beckford, and wish him the very best in his retirement,” stated the press release from WOC.