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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

President Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology Recommends Expanding Access to Telehealth and Broadband to Allow Older Americans to Stay at Home

Keeping People Healthy at Home Saves Medicare and Medicaid Expenditures, Report Says
March 25, 2016 12:11 PM

On March 15, 2016, the U.S. President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) released a report titled “Independence, Technology, and Connection in Older Age,” which includes recommendations for helping older Americans live independent and connected lives in their homes for as long as possible. The recommendations include ensuring older adults have broadband Internet access at home, as well as access to telehealth services and regular connection to caregivers. The report recognizes that the United States is “an aging society” and cited data from the U.S. Census Bureau indicating that 46 million Americans—about 15 percent of the total US population—were over the age of 65 in 2014, due to increasing life expectancy and healthier aging.

“With many Americans wishing to live in their homes and communities for as long as possible, technology such as prosthetics, wearable sensors, and other tools for daily living can make that possible,” said Christine Cassel and Ed Penhoet, members of PCAST and co-chairs of the PCAST Working Group on Independence, Technology, and Connection in Older Age.

The report states that many older adults would like to age in place and remain in the home and community that they have lived in for years. It cites an AARP survey estimating that almost 90 percent of older adults would like to stay in their homes for as long as possible. The report further states that, in addition to improving people’s quality of life, keeping people healthy in their homes can reduce Medicare and Medicaid expenditures.

Among its recommendations, the report states that there are additional steps the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) should take to improve telehealth. “While there are legislative restrictions on how Medicare can cover telehealth,” the report states, “CMS can act by increasingly incorporating telehealth in Alternative Payment Models, demonstration projects, and Innovation Center models. The CMS Innovation Center has already included expanded access to telehealth in the Next Generation ACO model program and in the Bundled Payment for Care Improvement Initiative, and further action would be welcome. In addition to Medicare, CMS can increase the number of state Medicaid waivers that allow for more use of telehealth in Medicaid programs. Actions by these two large payers would have ripple effects and remove significant barriers.”

Additional PCAST recommendations include:

  • Federal actions to expand affordable access to broadband in the homes of seniors and to provide support for training.
  • The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) should convene the Federation of State Medical Boards and the National Governors Association to accelerate reciprocal state licensure policies. CMS should use the full capacity of the Innovation Center to advance payment policies that support innovation in telehealth.
  • HHS should work with the Department of Housing and Urban Development to streamline and strengthen regulations and payment policies that govern home accessibility standards in order to promote uniform standards allowing efficient use and changes in technological support systems.

The full report is available here.




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