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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

Department of Labor Announces 6-Month Non-Enforcement of Overtime Rule Changes: “No Real Relief”

October 15, 2014 11:04 AM

The US Department of Labor (DoL) issued a “policy action” on October 9, 2014 that announced a 6-month postponement of any enforcement of the changes to the minimum wage and overtime rules affecting the “companionship services” and “live-in domestic services” exemptions under the Fair Labor Standards Act.  DoL also indicated that between July 1, 2015 and December 31, 2015 it would exercise discretion in enforcing the rule changes depending on whether the employer was working towards compliance in good faith.

However, “the Department’s policy Action provides no real relief,” states William A. Dombi, Vice President for Law at the National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC). “The action leaves open the risk that private enforcement will occur since the Department maintains the January 1, 2015 effective date of the rule changes,” he added. The DoL Policy Action only affects direct enforcement of the overtime rules by the Department itself. Private enforcement of overtime rights after January 1 is unaffected.

NAHC notes that private litigants, supported by law firms specializing in class action employment rights lawsuits, have been targeting home care companies to enforce existing overtime compensation rights under federal and state law. The rule changes open a significant additional category of workers who will have minimum wage and overtime rights beginning in 2015. “Home care companies should not be misled by the Department’s action. The delay of governmental enforcement may only be a trap for the unwary, leaving companies exposed to compensation liabilities,” Dombi said. NAHC recommends that home care companies plan to comply with the rule changes by January 1 or adjust business practices to avoid overtime compensation obligations.

The action follows intense efforts by a wide group of stakeholders seeking a rescission of the rule changes or a delay in the effective date. In addition to NAHC and its affiliate, the National Council on Medicaid Home Care, the National Association of Medicaid Directors, National Association of State Units on Aging, National Association of Directors of Developmental Disabilities Services, and states such as Oregon, Kansas, Pennsylvania, and Maryland sought delays or extensions of the effective date. DoL acknowledged that publicly –funded programs such a s Medicaid may need more time to modify their programs to comply with the new rules.

In addition to continuing efforts with Congress and the Department of Labor to delay or alter the rule changes, NAHC continues to prosecute its lawsuit against the Department of Labor, The lawsuit seeks to declare the rule changes invalid and in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act. NAHC is joined in the lawsuit by other associations representing companies that employ affected workers. The lawsuit is currently awaiting a court ruling. The DoL Policy Action has provided NAHC with the opportunity to inform the court of DoL’s admission that harm will occur if the rules take effect on January 1 and that an expedited ruling is essential.

The DoL action does not affect any state laws and regulations governing worker compensation. A number of states already require overtime to home care workers who may have fit within the federal definition of “companionship services.” Companies operating in such states should continue to comply with those stricter state laws and regulations.

To read the DoL’s policy action, please click here.




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