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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

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

Health 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

Congressman Beto O’Rourke participates in home care visit in El Paso, Texas

Visit, arranged by Tender Care Home Health, provided insight into the caring, high-quality care that home care provides
May 20, 2014 12:59 PM

Texas Congressman Beto O’Rourke (D-El Paso) recently participated in a home care visit with Tender Care Home Health, a home care agency that serves patients in his District.  The visit offered the opportunity for the Congressman to see first-hand the importance and value of providing quality care in the home to Texans who need it most. 

“Ensuring necessary home care services are accessible is the solution to our rising healthcare costs.  Home care is a practical, cost-effective solution for many families and we hope Congressman O’Rourke uses his positive, first-hand experience to continue educating other Members of Congress on the value of our industry,” said Rachel Hammon, executive director of the Texas Association for Home Care & Hospice (TAHC&H). 

TAHC&H is working to educate Members of Congress from the Texas delegation through direct dialogue and experiences on how home care and hospice services provide essential access to health care for elderly, disabled and medically frail Texans. Resources are available for other state associations to follow suite on NAHC’s Legislative Action Network website.

Home care provides high-quality, cost-effective health care services in the comfort of patient’s own homes rather than resorting to vastly more costly alternatives such as hospitalization or nursing homes.  Reimbursements for home care services provided under Medicare were cut dramatically as the Affordable Care Act phased in this year, and risk other potential cuts through CMS’ misguided rebasing Final Rule.

“We are proud to have Congressman O’Rourke join Tender Care Home Health on a home visit.  This experience showcases the importance of home health care as it serves those who truly require high acuity, medical attention in a place where we all want to be--home,” said Ann Rodriguez McConnell, RN, administrator of Tender Care Home Health.

Other home care and hospice providers are encouraged to set up home visits with their elected officials, as they are the most effective way to demonstrate the high-quality, cost-effective and preferred care that Americans want.

Here's how to Set Up a Home Care Visit:

  • Contact the local office of your senators and representative and ask to speak with the scheduler and/or the person who handles Medicare issues. It's a good idea to speak with both.
  • Invite the Member to visit your agency to see firsthand the compassionate, high quality, cost effective work that you provide your patients.
  • When you secure a commitment to come along on a home visit with your agency, work with the Member's press staff to invite the local media to come along on the visit.
  • Brush up on the issues by reviewing NAHC's talking points/issue briefs on preserving access to home care and hospice.
  • Urge the elected official to contact Congressional leaders to express his or her support for home care and hospice and opposition to any threatened payment cuts or copays.
  • Don't forget to take your camera and email pictures and a description of the visit to NAHC Report. As a reminder, you would need the patient’s permission and a signed release form for photos. Make the most of your visit! NAHC Report and other NAHC publications can highlight members' advocacy efforts.

Rep. O’Rourke joins other lawmakers in seeing firsthand they type of care that home health organizations provide. Home care and hospice advocate Senator Susan Collins cites her experience going on a home visit for why she is such a strong supporter of the home care and hospice community.

Home visits are an extremely compelling way to ensure that your elected officials are informed about the benefits of home care and hospice. Home care visits also create an opportunity for you to write about and take photos of the event and/or invite your local news media along to cover the story.




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