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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

OSHA Issues Revised Instruction for Inspectors Related to TB Exposures

July 17, 2015 02:49 PM

The Occupation Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)  has issued Instructions for  general enforcement policies and procedures to be followed when conducting inspections and issuing citations related to occupational exposure to tuberculosis (TB). The Instruction reflects guidance from the updated Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report: “Guidelines for Preventing the Transmission of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in Health-Care Settings, 2005.

In the document, OSHA reviews the background and current state of TB surveillance and control in the United States: 

“Since 1953, with the cooperation of state and local health departments, the CDC has collected information on newly-reported cases of TB in the United States. According to the CDC, a resurgence of TB in the mid-1980s was marked by several years of increasing case counts. The number of reported TB cases peaked in 1992. Case counts began decreasing again in 1993, and 2013 marked the twenty-first year of decline in the total number of TB cases reported in the United States since the peak of the resurgence. In total, 9,582 TB cases were reported in the United States in 2013, and approximately 4% of those cases were among healthcare workers (CDC Fact Sheet, Trends in Tuberculosis, 2013). This represents a rate of 3.0 cases per 100,000 persons, the lowest recorded rate since national reporting began in 1953.”

Despite the decreasing TB case rate, however, greater progress should be made. Additionally, multi-drug-resistant (MDR) tuberculosis and extremely drug resistant (XDR) tuberculosis continue to pose serious threats to workers in healthcare settings. OSHA will continue to enforce employers’ obligations to protect affected employees against the hazards associated with TB.”

OSHA defines a “healthcare setting” as any setting in which healthcare is delivered and workers might share air space with persons with the TB disease or come in contact with clinical TB specimens.

The Instructions provide guidelines as to when the OSHA inspector are to conduct inspections of health care settings related to occupational exposure to TB. Inspections are to occur in the following circumstances:

  1. In response to any valid employee complaint regarding TB exposure or in response to any valid referral regarding TB exposure from a government agency or safety and health professional.
  2. In response to TB-related employee fatalities or catastrophes.
  3. As part of all health inspections in facilities where the incidence of TB infection among patients/clients in the relevant facility or healthcare setting is greater than the incidence of TB among individuals in the most local general population for which the health department has information.

Hospice facilities are grouped as long term care within in the “nontraditional facility-based settings” and would be subject to the same inspection protocols as a long-term care facility.

Home health care, which would include home hospice, is recognized as a type of health care setting subject to OSHA inspection for occupational TB exposures. However, the document separates this setting from inpatient and outpatient settings and limits inspections to an evaluation of the employer’s TB Control program and employee interviews. 

Agencies may want to review the CDC’s Guidelines for Preventing the Transmission of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in Health-Care Settings, 2005 to ensure they have an effective TB control program in place.

To view the OSHA Instructions click here.




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