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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

Trump and GOP Senators Lagging in the Polls

August 23, 2016 02:18 PM

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is slumping in the polls against Democrat Secretary Hillary Clinton and appears to be dragging down some of his party’s candidates for the United States Senate.

Polls of the presidential race show Clinton leading Trump by six to nine points nationally in most polls, but it is the state polls that are even more worrisome for Trump. Clinton leads Trump by nine points in Florida, according to a new poll released on August 16 and 14 points in another poll released August 23. Recent polls of New Hampshire and North Carolina have Clinton holding a nine point lead in both states. The Clinton campaign is so confident of its double-digit leads in Colorado and Virginia that it has suspended television advertising in those states.

Trump vowed to use his appeal to working class voters to take the industrial Midwest out of the Democratic column, but the most recent polls show Clinton with a 10-point lead in Michigan and a 15-point lead in Wisconsin. The last four polls of Pennsylvania put Clinton up by 10 or 11 points.

Trump is not currently leading in any of the 11 battleground states (Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Wisconsin). With the Republican party’s standard-bearer in such trouble, it’s not surprising that some of the GOP’s Senate candidates are fighting the headwinds.

The GOP currently enjoys a 54-46 advantage in the Senate, but since the party conventions in July, the fortunes of several Republican incumbents have darkened considerably.

While most Senate races will see the incumbent safely returned to office, there are at least nine competitive contests that should ultimately decide control of the Senate. In most of those nine states, Donald Trump has fallen in the polls in August and so has the Republican Senate candidate, suggesting a link between the fate of the GOP’s presidential candidate and its Senate majority.

In North Carolina, incumbent Republican Richard Burr held a narrow lead over Democratic challenger Deborah Ross, a former state representative, for most of the summer and the state remained a toss-up between Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton. However, following the party conventions, Clinton has leapt into the lead in the Tar Heel state, with the latest poll showing her up by nine points. That same poll also shows Ross finally taking a narrow two-point lead over Burr.

In New Hampshire and Pennsylvania, both considered battleground states by the Trump campaign -- and home to fiercely contested Senate races -- Trump has fallen behind Clinton by double digits and Republican incumbent Senators Kelly Ayotte and Pat Toomey have lost their leads over Democratic challengers and now trail narrowly. This is particularly worrisome for the GOP because both Ayotte and Toomey have made it clear they are not enthusiastic supporters of Trump and do not want to campaign alongside him. Their decline in the polls since the party conventions indicates that many voters who do not like Trump may be inclined to punish even Republicans who are publicly cool to their party’s nominee.

In Illinois and Wisconsin, two states where Clinton holds big leads over Trump, Republican incumbents Mark Kirk and Ron Johnson are considered the most vulnerable GOP candidates. In Illinois, where Trump trails by 20 points, Kirk is now an average of seven points behind Democrat Tammy Duckworth in the polls. In Wisconsin, Johnson is 11 points behind former Senator Russell Feingold, a margin almost identical to Trump’s 12-point deficit in the state.

In Indiana, home to Trump’s running mate Mike Pence, Democrat Evan Bayh, also a former Senator, has taken a seven point lead over Republican Representative Todd Young in a poll released August 17. That race is to fill the open seat left by retiring Republican Dan Coats.

Republicans incumbents in Florida and Ohio are faring better, Marco Rubio and Rob Portman are holding on to narrow leads thanks, in part, to big cash advantages.

Democrats are in good position to pick up Senate seats in Indiana, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Wisconsin and North Carolina, which would give them control of the Senate. The Democrats are within striking distance in Ohio and Florida and could take both races if Trump continues his fall in the polls. By contrast, the GOP has only one realistic chance to pick up a Senate seat, in Nevada, where Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid is retiring. Vying to replace him are Rep. Joe Heck, a Republican, and Catherine Cortez Masto, a former state attorney general who would be the Senate’s first Latina, if elected. That race is currently too close to call.

It is early, but many pundits estimate the Democrats will win a majority of two seats in the Senate, 52 to 48 (two independent Senators caucus with the Democrats).




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