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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

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

Senator Sherrod Brown set to Introduce Legislation to Provide Health Insurance to Children Most in Need

Bill would extend funding of the CHIP program funding, which is set to expire in September 2015
January 30, 2015 02:18 PM

Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) – a member of the powerful Senate Finance Committee – visited Dayton Children’s Hospital earlier this week to announce a plan that would extend funding to provide health coverage to more than 130,000 children in his home state of Ohio, and millions nationwide. Senator Brown announced that he will become the lead sponsor of legislation to extend funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), which is currently set to expire in September.

“Providing health insurance to low-income children isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s the smart thing to do,” said Senator Brown during his hospital visit. “CHIP provides more than 130,000 Ohio children the ability to grow into healthy adults through affordable health insurance. As states begin the process of budgeting for the next fiscal year, they need the financial certainty that federal funds will be there to help fund this crucial program. If Congress doesn’t act, Ohio stands to lose up to $146 million in federal funds in 2016 alone. That’s why I am calling on Congress to pass a funding extension for this program immediately.”

CHIP was created in 1997 as a joint state-federal health insurance program for low- to moderate-income children and pregnant women who are not Medicaid eligible. Within three years of its initial passage, all 50 states opted into the program, providing millions with access to health insurance. Nationwide, CHIP provides access to comprehensive, affordable coverage to more than eight million children. Unlike Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, which were set up as entitlement programs that weren’t subjected to periodic reauthorization by Congress or Congress’ discretionary spending appropriations process, CHIP does need to be reauthorized and funded through Congress. While the program is currently authorized through 2019, its funding is set to expire at the end of 2015.

Underscoring the need for Congressional action, 39 governors – including Ohio’s Republican governor John Kasich – sent letters last year to Congressional representatives urging swift action to extend the current program. The need for prompt federal action is crucial as states begin the process of constructing their annual budgets.

On the Congressional level, both Democrats and Republicans understand the value and importance of the CHIP program. In one of the last hearings held by the powerful House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee in the 113th Congress, Subcommittee Chairman Joseph Pitts (R-PA) stated that:

“CHIP is a means-tested program designed to cover children and pregnant women who make too much to qualify for Medicaid, but may not have access to purchase affordable private health insurance.Most recently, the Affordable Care Act reauthorized CHIP through FY2019, but the law only provided funding for the program through September 30, 2015.

CHIP has historically enjoyed bipartisan Congressional support, and it is widely seen as providing better care than many state Medicaid programs. Moving forward, Congress should be thoughtful and data-driven in our approach.”

NAHC and its affiliate, the Pediatric Home Care Association of America, strongly support an extension of funding for the CHIP program, and hopes that such action will be seen as a priority for the 114th Congress.

For more on NAHC’s coverage of CHIP authorization, please see NAHC Report, December 12, 2014.




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