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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

The NAHC Challenge: 100 U.S. Senators on Home Visits Before 2018 Elections

September 26, 2016 02:09 PM

"A home visit can be a very powerful way to help government leaders understand the value of home care and hospice.” — NAHC President Val J. Halamandaris. 

17_NAHC_Challenge_BannerThe National Association of Home Care & Hospice is announcing a challenge to its members: Let’s get all 100 U.S. Senators on a home care or hospice visit before the 2018 elections. And let’s make sure those home care visits are covered by the local print, broadcast and online media, compete with photos and videos, so we can present our case not just to lawmakers, but to the general public.

Years of partisan bickering and gridlock have convinced many Americans that members of Congress are out of touch with the needs of their constituents and communities. In the home care and hospice community, we know the stakes are too high for that to continue. As NAHC President Val Halamandaris has said: “With the 78 million baby boomers coming into their Medicare years, Americans must come to grips with the need to assist them in managing disability and chronic disease. The facts are clear: 5 percent of Americans are responsible for 50 percent of U.S. health care costs, and 10 percent of Americans who need help managing long-term chronic conditions account for 75 percent of the bill.”

The home care and hospice community in Kansas has shown us the way. At the invitation and urging of industry leaders in the Sunflower State, every member of the Kansas Congressional delegation has made at least one home care visit, to talk with providers and patients and see in person the irreplaceable role home care plays in our health care system. And those visits shape opinions.

Senator Pat Roberts (R-KS) said at a recent Home Care & Hospice March on Washington Conference that his commitment to home care and hospice began the day he participated in his first home visit in Kansas. “That day really underscored my belief in the incredible value of the personal touch of the home care industry.”

Senator Jerry Moran (R-KS) is a repeat home care visitor, including meeting with a patient on her 88th birthday, who was being treated at home for a serious foot injury. “Each time I visit one of these facilities and meet the individuals providing care to Kansans, I learn something new about the unique challenges they face,” says Senator Moran.

When members of Congress make home care visits, they come away converts. Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) cites her experience going on a visit with a home care advocate in Maine for why she is such a strong supporter of the home care and hospice community. “I encourage each and every one of you to invite your Senators and your members of the House, when they are back home during the recess, to come with you on a home health care visit. I can assure that you will gain converts every step of the way,” she told NAHC members earlier this year.

NAHC encourages all its members to emulate Kansas and invite their Senators on a home care visit. The best advertisement for home care and hospice is your hard work and matchless results. If you have already done so, please let us know so we can tell your story here at NAHC Report.

So how is it done? Well, it’s probably easier than you think. Here is a step-by-step guide to inviting your U.S. Senator on a home visit:

  • Contact the local offices of your Senators and ask to speak with the scheduler and the person who handles Medicare issues (ideally both) regarding your invitation for the Senator. 
  • Invite the Senator to visit your agency to see firsthand the compassionate, high-quality, cost-effective work that your agency provides to patients.
  • When you secure a commitment from the Senator to attend a home visit with your agency, work with the Senator's press staff to invite the local media to come along on the visit.
  • Brush up on the key issues to highlight. (We recommend NAHC’s Legislative Action Center.)
  • Urge the elected official to contact other Congressional leaders to express his or her support on the key issues.

Please take photos of the Senator during the home visit, and email pictures and a description of the visit to NAHC Report. (Remember, you need the patient’s permission and a signed release form for photos if they include the patient. You can download the form here)

There is no solution to America’s health care crisis without the home care and hospice community, which provides the best services at the best value. America needs home care and hospice now, but it will need it even more in the future.




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