Skip to Main Content
National Association for Home Care & Hospice
Twitter Facebook Pintrest


In the various roles he has undertaken through the years, Val J. Halamandaris has been a singular driving force behind the policy and program initiatives resulting in the recognition of home health care as a viable alternative to institutionalization. His dedication to consumer advocacy, which enhances the quality of life and dignity of those receiving home health care, merits VNA HealthCare Group’s highest recognition and deepest respect. 

VNA HealthCare Group

I have the highest respect for them, especially for the nurses, aides and therapists, who devote their lives to caring for people with disabilities, the infirm and dying Americans.  There are few more noble professions.

President Barack Obama

Home health care agencies do such a wonderful job in this country helping people to be able to remain at home and allowing them to receive services

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) Chair, Democratic Steering and Outreach Committee

Heath care at home…is something we need more of, not less of.  Let us make a commitment to preventive and long-term care.  Let us encourage home care as an alternative to nursing homes and give folks a little help to have their parents there.

Former President Bill Clinton

Home care is a combination of compassion and efficiency.  It is less expensive than institutional care...but at the same time it is a more caring, human, intimate experience, and therefore it has a greater human’s a big mistake not to try to maximize it and find ways to give people the home care option over either nursing homes, hospitals or other institutions

Former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Newt Gingrich (R-GA)

Medicaid covers long-term care, but only for low-income families.  And Medicare only pays for care that is connected to a hospital discharge....our health care system must cover these vital services...[and] we should promote home-based care, which most people prefer, instead of the institutional care that we emphasize now.

Former U.S. Senator Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-CD)

We need incentives to...keep people in home health care settings...It’s dramatically less expensive than long term care.

U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ)


Home care is clearly the wave of the future. It’s clearly where patients want to be cared for. I come from an ethnic family and when a member of our family is severely ill, we would never consider taking them to get institutional care. That’s true of many families for both cultural and financial reasons. If patients have a choice of where they want to be cared for, where it’s done the right way, they choose home.

Donna Shalala, former Secretary of Health and Human Services

A couple of years ago, I spent a little bit of time with the National Association for Home Care & Hospice and its president, Val J. Halamandaris, and I was just blown away. What impressed me so much was that they talked about what they do as opposed to just the strategies of how to deal with Washington or Sacramento or Albany or whatever the case may be. Val is a fanatic about care, and it comes through in every way known to mankind. It comes through in the speakers he invites to their events; it comes through in all the stuff he shares.

Tom Peters, author of In Search of Excellence

Val’s home care organization brings thousands of caregivers together into a dynamic organization that provides them with valuable resources and tools to be even better in their important work. He helps them build self-esteem, which leads to self-motivation.

Mike Vance, former Dean of Disney and author of Think Out of the Box

Val is one of the greatest advocates for seniors in America. He goes beyond the call of duty every time.

Arthur S. Flemming, former Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare

Val has brought the problems, the challenges, and the opportunities out in the open for everyone to look at. He is a visionary pointing the direction for us. 

Margaret (Peg) Cushman, Professor of Nursing and former President of the Visiting Nurses Association

Although Val has chosen to stay in the background, he deserves much of the credit for what was accomplished both at the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging, where he was closely associated with me and at the House Select Committee on Aging, where he was Congressman Claude Pepper’s senior counsel and closest advisor. He put together more hearings on the subject of aging, wrote more reports, drafted more bills, and had more influence on the direction of events than anyone before him or since.

Frank E. Moss, former U.S. Senator

Val’s most important contribution is pulling together all elements of home health care and being able to organize and energize the people involved in the industry.

Frank E. Moss, former U.S. Senator

Anyone working on health care issues in Congress knows the name Val J. Halamandaris.

Kathleen Gardner Cravedi, former Staff Director of the House Select Committee on Aging

Without your untiring support and active participation, the voices of people advocating meaningful and compassionate health care reform may not have been heard by national leaders.

Michael Sullivan, Former Executive Director, Indiana Association for Home Care

All of us have been members of many organizations and NAHC is simply the best there is. NAHC aspires to excellence in every respect; its staff has been repeatedly honored as the best in Washington; the organization lives by the highest values and has demonstrated a passionate interest in the well-being of patients and providers.

Elaine Stephens, Director of Home Care of Steward Home Care/Steward Health Systems and former NAHC C

Home care increasingly is one of the basic building blocks in the developing system of long-term care.  On both economic and recuperative bases, home health care will continue to grow as an essential service for individuals, for families and for the community as a whole.

Former U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME)

NCOA is excited to be part of this great event and honored to have such influential award winners in the field of aging.

National Council of Aging

Home Health Leaders: Medicare Proposed Rule Could Result in Nearly $100 Billion in Total Cuts to Home Health Benefit

Proposed 14 percent cut to Medicare home health benefit threatens access to clinically advanced, cost-effective, patient preferred home care for some of the nation’s most vulnerable seniors
August 29, 2013 01:12 PM

Representatives of the nation’s three leading home health organizations - National Association for Home Care and Hospice (NAHC), Visiting Nurse Associations of America (VNAA), and Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare (Partnership) – recently released new analyses demonstrating the impact the proposed Home Health Prospective Payment System (HHPPS) rule issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is projected to have on the nation’s home health delivery system and 3.5 million Medicare home health beneficiaries, if finalized in its current form.

The new analysis follows substantial comments NAHC has developed and submitted to CMS highlighting several of the most egregious flaws, areas of concern, and proposed modifications that would serve as a better course of action.

For more on NAHC’s CMS comments, please see NAHC Report from August 27, 2013. 

NAHC has also released a comprehensive white paper detailing the flaws in CMS’ proposed rebasing formula.

In CMS’ proposed HHPPS rule, issued June 27, CMS proposes to further reduce Medicare home health funding by instituting a rebasing rate set at the maximum level permitted by law – 3.5 percent annually from 2014 to 2017 – totaling a 14 percent cut over the next four years.  Analysis of the proposed rule reveals that a 14 percent reduction in home health reimbursement would result in a cut of $22 billion over 10 years.

“In the more than30 years I have had the privilege to represent the nation’s home health community, I have never seen a time when our sector faced such devastating funding cuts,” said Val J. Halamandaris, President of the National Association for Home Care and Hospice (NAHC).  “The Administration and Congress must not ignore the realities of this proposal and the real threat it poses to the future of home health delivery in America.  These proposed cuts will result in reduced patient access to cost-effective healthcare – the exact opposite of what the Affordable Care Act set out to achieve.”

When coupled with the $72.5 billionin Medicare home health funding that has been cut since 2009 due to a series of legislative and regulatory changes, the nation’s home health sector is facing a total cut of nearly $100 billion.  If finalized as proposed, this cut is projected to impose net operating losses on 47 of the 50 states and the District of Columbia by 2017, rendering many home health agencies inoperable.  Nationally, the Medicare home health margin will drop to -9.77 percent.

During the teleconference, home health leaders stressed the essential nature of the home health benefit and the direct threat CMS’ proposed cut places on the 3.5 million vulnerable, homebound American seniors and disabled individuals who receive clinically advanced, cost-effective and patient preferred home healthcare each year.  Data show that Medicare’s home health beneficiaries are older, sicker and poorer than the Medicare population as a whole and, therefore, at greater risk when cuts take effect.

“We expected something good [from CMS], but what we got was a lump of coal,” Mr. Halamandaris has said. “What we got may be the straw the breaks the camel’s back…Let us inform CMS that they have gone too far. It’s time to change the damage that they have caused.”

Home health leaders also stressed during the teleconference that these cuts do not have to happen. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) provides the Secretary with discretionary authority in implementing the rebasing provision and does not direct her to reduce Medicare home health payments.  The statute, Executive Orders, and case law also call for a series of steps to be taken to ensure that any changes made by CMS are “appropriate” and "provide for continued access to quality services."

According to a previous NAHC Report article from June 28, 2013, NAHC is seeking clarifications and a full disclosure of CMS’ calculation data and methodology. At this point, NAHC believes that the proposal is based on an unsupportable calculation.

NAHC members are encouraged to contact their lawmakers and urge them to preserve access to home health care by opposing such rate cuts.

To view a video on rebasing by NAHC President Val J. Halamandaris, please click here.

To read the previous NAHC Report articles on rebasing, please click here.




©  National Association for Home Care & Hospice. All Rights Reserved.