Linwood Cemetery and Crematory donates generous gift to Merrimack Valley Hospice

Haverhill, MA – Recently, representatives from the Board of Trustees of Linwood Cemetery and Crematory presented a generous gift to Merrimack Valley Hospice in recognition of the wonderful care they provide.  Funds will be designated to support patients as they confront the challenges of advanced illness and end of life at High Pointe House, the hospice and palliative care residence of Merrimack Valley Hospice in Haverhill.

“We are pleased to make this substantial donation to High Pointe House to assist the valuable services Merrimack Valley Hospice provides to patients and families in our community.  They are a tremendous resource to our city and region,” said Gordon Stone, Trustee at Linwood.

“We are touched that the Board of Trustees of Linwood Cemetery and Crematory voted to designate these critical funds to Merrimack Valley Hospice,” said Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation which includes Merrimack Valley Hospice, Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc. “It is an honor to be their charity of choice; many patients and their families will benefit from this special gift to support High Pointe House.”

Linwood Cemetery and Crematory is a private, non-denominational, nonprofit 45 acre cemetery located in Haverhill, MA.  Since being founded over 170 years ago, Linwood Cemetery and Crematory has helped families memorialize their loved ones with dignity and respect in surroundings of unparalleled beauty and serenity.  They provide full-service, year-round burial and cremation services tailored to personal, religious, and cultural preferences.

Merrimack Valley Hospice, affiliated with Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., is a not-for-profit agency dedicated to serving the needs of terminally ill patients and their families.  Together, the agencies serve more than 110 communities throughout Northeastern Massachusetts, the Merrimack Valley, Southern New Hampshire and Southern Maine.

To learn more about these organizations, visit LinwoodCemeteryOnline.com and MerrimackValleyHospice.org.
 

L-R: Michael Kenney, Karen Gomes, and Gordon Stone

Share

Rachel Russo named to the New Hampshire Hospice and Palliative Care Organization Board of Directors

Lawrence, MA – Rachel Russo, RN, BSN, Palliative Care Manager for Merrimack Valley Hospice, has been named to the Board of Directors of the New Hampshire Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHHPCO), the only statewide organization dedicated to promoting excellence in care for those facing life-limiting illnesses.   In this role, Russo will work with fellow board members to educate healthcare professionals, caregivers and others about palliative care and advocate for legislative and regulatory changes that improve patient choice and access to quality care.

Russo has more than 14 years of experience in hospice and palliative care at a variety of agencies in Massachusetts.  At Merrimack Valley Hospice, Russo is responsible for the development, implementation and management of pediatric and adult palliative care services.  She oversees a staff of ten nurse practitioners, registered nurses and social workers who ensure the delivery of the highest quality palliative services throughout our service area.

Russo lives in Wakefield.

Merrimack Valley Hospice is a not-for-profit agency providing comfort care and supportive services to patients nearing the end of life, and bereavement services to their families and loved ones.  Together with Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., the agencies provide a full continuum of home health and hospice care in more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice.

 

Share

Merrimack Valley Hospice names Prashant Shankar, MD, Associate Medical Director

Lawrence, MA – Prashant Shankar, MD has been named Associate Medical Director for Merrimack Valley Hospice, one of the largest and most respected hospice agencies in Massachusetts. In this role, Dr. Shankar will join Dr. JoAnne Nowak in the comprehensive medical care and clinical oversight of patients receiving end-of-life care in homes, skilled nursing facilities, residential communities and at High Pointe House, the hospice and palliative care residence of Merrimack Valley Hospice.

Dr. Shankar brings more than 14 years of experience in hematology, oncology and palliative care to Merrimack Valley Hospice. He received his medical degree at Kilpauk Medical College in Chennai, India, and completed his residency in Internal Medicine at University of Connecticut School of Medicine in Farmington, Connecticut. He also completed fellowships in hematology and oncology at Tufts Medical Center and received advanced training in practice and leadership in palliative care at Harvard Medical School in Boston. Dr Shankar is board certified in internal medicine, hematology and oncology. Prior to joining Merrimack Valley Hospice, Dr. Shankar was a hematology and oncology physician in private practice.

Dr. Shankar lives in Andover.

Merrimack Valley Hospice is a not-for-profit agency providing comfort care and supportive services to patients nearing the end of life, and bereavement services to their families and loved ones. Together with Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., the agencies provide a full continuum of home health and hospice care in more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice.

Share

New senior administrators announced

Lawrence MA – Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, newly appointed President and CEO of Home Health Foundation, today announced the appointment of two new senior administrators to their Executive Management Committee. 

Patricia Buiocchi, RN, MBA, NHA, will join Home Health Foundation as Vice President of Strategic Operations.  Well known in the area, Patricia most recently served as Vice President of Development and Strategic Planning at Northeast Rehabilitation Hospital.  An exceptional leader with 27 years of clinical and operational experience in a variety of settings, Patricia will work with staff throughout the organization to further the agency’s mission by participating in strategy and direction setting, identifying and prioritizing areas for improvement, assisting project teams with scope definition, and encouraging good change management practices. She will assume direct oversight for the Referral and Utilization Review Departments as work continues on the development and centralization of clinical admission functions across multiple business lines.

Julie Conway, RN, Esq., has accepted the position of Vice President of Clinical Services/Chief Clinical Officer for Home Health Foundation.  She brings a broad range of experience in home health care, clinical operations and senior management to the role, most recently serving as Division Director for multi-site clinical operations at Bayada Home Health Care. With more than 30 years of clinical experience, Julie has developed clinical programs for population health management, and developed and implemented initiatives to improve patient experience, improve outcomes, and decrease cost of services.  Julie has led teams focused on growth, people, service, quality and financial performance metrics and brings a cultural understanding of our Pillars of Excellence to the role that will include the development of clinical services and the evaluation and implementation of clinical programs.                              

“Patricia and Julie are extremely talented and committed health care professionals, and I am excited to have them join our team,” said Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation.  “I am confident in their ability to work with Senior Management, Leadership and our entire organization as we focus on initiatives to further our mission and enhance our reputation as a leader in home health and hospice care.”

Home Health Foundation, the leader in home health care, is comprised of affiliate agencies Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.   Together the three agencies serve more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.

Share

Hospice residence renamed High Pointe House

Lawrence, MA – Merrimack Valley Hospice House, located at 360 North Avenue in Haverhill, MA, has been renamed High Pointe House, the hospice and palliative care residence of Merrimack Valley Hospice.

“We are so honored to have recently received a very generous, anonymous pledge of support that allows the donor to be recognized by naming the hospice House,” said Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation which includes Merrimack Valley Hospice, Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc.  “This wonderful gesture supports patients and families in need of comprehensive end-of-life care and builds on our unwavering commitment to compassion and dignity for patients and families throughout the communities we serve.”

The newly named High Pointe House, which opened in June 2009, contains 21 private suites as well as libraries, indoor and outdoor dining areas, family gathering areas and beautiful walkways and gardens.   Since opening, the House has provided comprehensive end-of-life care to more than 4,000 patients, and grief and bereavement support to families and loved ones.

“The name High Pointe House reflects our beautiful and peaceful setting and is meaningful to the donor, a proud and private local family,” said Donna Deveau, Vice President of External Relations for Home Health Foundation. “The name helps build upon our legacy of caring and compassion, and represents the ability of patients and families to experience respect and dignity with reminders of life’s celebrations during their individual journeys.”

For more information on High Pointe House or to request a brochure, call 978-552-4186.

Home Health Foundation, the leader in home health care, is comprised of affiliate agencies Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.   Together the three agencies serve more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.

Share

Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, leads Home Health Foundation as new President and CEO

Lawrence, MA. Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, has been appointed President and CEO of Home Health Foundation, which includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. Home Health Foundation is a multi-state, full service provider of certified home health, palliative, hospice and private duty services with annual revenues of $60 million. It serves 110 cities and towns throughout Northeastern Massachusetts, the Merrimack Valley and Southern New Hampshire, with 5 offices and a 21 suite hospice house, that combined oversee an average daily census of 3,500 patients. In addition, Merrimack Valley Hospice, operating in partnership with York Hospital, provides comprehensive end-of-life care and bereavement services in 13 communities in Southern Maine.

Prior to her appointment as President and CEO, Gomes was Vice President of Clinical Services for Home Health VNA and Chief Clinical Officer of Home Health Foundation. During her tenure, Gomes assumed progressive leadership roles across the agency, developed and implemented a wide variety of progressive, clinically advanced patient care initiatives and led transitions of care and quality improvement programs. She also has a firm grasp of industry legislative issues and initiatives.

“I am honored to be selected by the Board of Trustees to continue to advance home health and hospice services to benefit patients and families in this region,” said Gomes. I look forward to working with the Board of Trustees, Executive Management Committee and our committed staff to continue our legacy and stellar reputation as a leader in the industry.”

Gomes received a Bachelor of Science degree from Regents College and a Master of Science degree from the University of Massachusetts. She has more than 18 years of experience in home health and hospice care. Prior to joining Home Health VNA, Gomes was Executive Director of Home Health Services at Northeast Senior Health where she was responsible for the start-up, growth and development of their Medicare certified home health care agency.

Gomes lives in Beverly with her husband and family.

Share

Welcome to High Pointe House!

We are pleased to announce the renaming of Merrimack Valley Hospice House in recognition of a most generous donor gift. The house will now be known as High Pointe House, the hospice and palliative care residence of Merrimack Valley Hospice. Reflecting the beauty and serenity of the setting, High Pointe House also represents our ongoing commitment to provide compassionate care and dignity to patients and families along the journey to life’s end.      

Share

Home Health Foundation Recognizes Community Leaders, Announces Hospice House New Name at Benefit Event

Lawrence, Mass. – On Thursday, May 11, 2017 more than 250 guests gathered in support of the agencies of Home Health Foundation, and to honor several leaders in the community at the 6th annual Legacy of Leading recognition dinner.  Honored were Stephen and Joan Clark, community philanthropists, and Dianne Anderson, President and CEO of Lawrence General Hospital.  Stephen and Joan were recognized for their commitment to quality healthcare and their on-going support of Merrimack Valley Hospice.  Dianne Anderson was acknowledged for transforming Lawrence General Hospital from a local community hospital to a regional medical center.

“As friends and partners in our work, Stephen and Joan Clark and Dianne Anderson enable our organization to better serve patients and families with the quality care they deserve,” said John Albert, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation, which includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.  “Both shared stories of how they were touched by the agencies of Home Health Foundation which deepened their commitment to the critical work that we do.”

During the event it was also announced that that Merrimack Valley Hospice received a transformational gift from Stephen and Joan Clark to name Merrimack Valley Hospice House.   Going forward, the new name will be High Pointe House, a hospice and palliative care residence of Merrimack Valley Hospice.  High Pointe is the name of the foundation established by the Clark’s in honor of their son Stephen, who passed away in 2009.

“We are thrilled with this gift and so appreciative of the impact it will have on patients and families, said Donna Deveau, Vice President of External Relations for Home Health Foundation.  “The name reflects our beautiful and peaceful setting and sets the tone for our compassionate hospice philosophy of care.”

The event raised more than $80,000 in support of programs dedicated to assisting the patients and families served by Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.

Sponsors of the event included:

Benefactor Sponsors: Lupoli Companies, Pentucket Bank, Enterprise Bank, Trinity EMS and TD Bank

Ambassador Sponsors: Haverhill Bank, Lawrence General Hospital, North Shore Bank,  Northern Essex Community College, and Rogers Spring Hill Garden & Farm Center, Inc.

Advocate Sponsors: Anna Jaques Hospital, Atlantic Charter Insurance, Atwood Memorial Company, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Elder Services of the Merrimack Valley, Georgetown Bank, Greater Lawrence Family Health Center, H.L. Farmer & Sons Funeral Homes, Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union, Lowell Five Cent Savings Bank, Maguire Pest Control, Mary Immaculate Health/Care Services, Merrimack Valley Credit Union, Merrimack Valley Magazine, Pest End, Inc., Pridestar EMS, and Zampell Companies

The Home Health Foundation includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.  Our organization continues to deliver the highest quality home health and hospice care for infants, children, adults and elders in both home and community settings.  Our service area includes more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire.

Share

John G. Albert, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation to retire

Lawrence, MA – John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation, has announced his intention to retire on June 1, 2017 citing personal health reasons.   “I have thoroughly enjoyed my many years as head of this wonderful organization,” said Albert.  “Working with a committed Board of Trustees and some of the most dedicated employees in the industry, we have built a financially strong and vibrant agency.”

Mary Jane Thomas, Chair of the Board of Trustees, credits Albert with more than two decades of leadership.  “John has served seven years as CEO, and more than 20 years as a member of the Board of Trustees, during which he assumed progressive leadership roles including Treasurer, Vice Chair and Chairman” said Thomas.  “During his tenure as President and CEO, he led the agency with honor and integrity, while expanding the depth and breadth of home health and hospice services.

John will be succeeded by Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, who is currently Vice President of Clinical Services for Home Health VNA and Chief Clinical Officer of Home Health Foundation.  “When considering a replacement, the Board of Trustees determined that the obvious successor was right in front of us,” said Thomas. “During her 5 years at Home Health VNA, Karen has assumed progressive leadership roles throughout the agency, developed and implemented innovative programs in chronic disease management and telehealth and led transitions of care and quality improvement programs.  She also has demonstrated a firm grasp of industry issues and initiatives.  We wish John all the best in his retirement and look forward to working with Karen.  We are confident she has the experience and dedication to further the mission and vision of the agency.”

“I am honored to be selected by the Board of Trustees to continue to advance home health and hospice services to benefit patients and families in this region,” said Gomes.  I look forward to working with the Board of Trustees, Executive Management Committee and our committed staff to continue our legacy and stellar reputation as a leader in the industry.”

Gomes received a Bachelor of Science degree from Regents College and a Master of Science degree from University of Massachusetts.  She has more than 18 years of experience in home health and hospice care.  Prior to joining Home Health VNA, Gomes was Executive Director of Home Health Services at Northeast Senior Health where she was responsible for the start-up, growth and development of their Medicare certified home health care agency.

Home Health Foundation, the leader in home health care, is comprised of affiliate agencies Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.   Together the three agencies serve more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.

Share

Listen to Vice President Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, talk about innovation in home health care

Click here, to list to Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, discuss innovative programs and services available at Home Health VNA, and the critical role home care plays in the changing health care environment.

Share

Kingston Veterans Club supports Merrimack Valley Hospice

Lawrence, MA – The Kingston Veterans Club recently presented Merrimack Valley Hospice with a generous gift in honor of the compassionate care provided to members and their families this past year.  The $750.00 gift was presented by club member Greg Queene at Merrimack Valley Hospice House in Haverhill, MA.

The Kingston Veterans Club presented Merrimack Valley Hospice with a generous gift“We are touched that the Kingston Veterans Club chooses to make their annual gift to Merrimack Valley Hospice, to honor the lives of our US Veterans who served this country and to help support the services that we provide to their members and the community,” said Donna Deveau, Vice President of External Relations and Development for Home Health Foundation.  “Many choose to make a donation in support of Merrimack Valley Hospice as a way to pay tribute to those who have passed and to help others receive hospice care when needed.  This is such a meaningful gift.”

The Kingston Veterans Club was established in 1946 by a local group of returning, WWII veterans.  They coordinate a variety of annual fundraising activities to support local community organizations and veteran services.

Merrimack Valley Hospice is a not-for-profit agency providing comfort care and supportive services to patients nearing the end of life, and bereavement services to their families and loved ones.  Together with Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., the agencies provide a full continuum of home health and hospice care in more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire.  Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice.

Share

Home Health VNA recognized nationally for patient satisfaction

HHCAHPS Photo John Albert Karen GomesLawrence, MA – Home Health VNA was recently ranked as one of the country’s highest performing home care agencies in the area of patient satisfaction by scoring in the top 25% of Fazzi Associates 2016 National Patient Satisfaction survey called the Home Health Care Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems or HHCAHPS.  This survey is one of home care’s oldest, largest and most respected patient satisfaction benchmarking systems.  Agencies in the top 25% are recognized as proven leaders that have excelled in one of the most important measures of an agency’s quality program.

“Home Health VNA has more than a120 year history of excellence in patient care outcomes and in satisfaction with care,” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO.  “It’s a privilege to care for patients and families in our communities.  We honor that privilege with our commitment to patient satisfaction.”

“Our staff is dedicated to providing the highest standards of care to our patients every day,” said Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, Chief Clinical Officer and Vice President of Clinical Services.  “Being again named among the best agencies in the country for patient satisfaction recognizes that dedication.”

Home Health VNA is a not-for-profit agency affiliated with HomeCare, Inc. and Merrimack Valley Hospice.  Together, the three agencies serve more than 110 communities throughout Northeastern Massachusetts, the Merrimack Valley and Southern New Hampshire.

Share

Bereavement Support as the Holidays Approach

When someone has lost a loved one, holidays often magnify the feelings of grief;especially if this is the first holiday season since the loss. Memories of good times,togetherness and traditional gatherings often remind people of their loss.  It can also be very painful for people who are grieving to watch others who are feeling thankful and are celebrating when sorrow makes participating in festivities overwhelming.

The first step in coping with grief at the holidays is to acknowledge that the season will be difficult and then to prepare for it in advance by making plans and obtaining support.  For some, support groups can teach holiday coping skills and provide opportunities to share feelings with others who are also grieving.  Merrimack Valley Hospice offers several loss specific bereavement groups during the holiday season as well as throughout the year.  New support groups forming after the New Year include a men’s support group, a group for parents who have lost an adult child and a group specific to those who have lost a loved one due to substance abuse.   All support groups are offered at convenient locations in and around the Merrimack Valley, are free of charge and open to the public.

If you, or someone you know, would like a list of upcoming support groups offered during this holiday season, please contact the Bereavement Department at Merrimack Valley Hospice at 978-552-4510.  You can also find the list on our website at MerrimackValleyHospice.org.

Sincerely,

Siobhan Mahoney, LICSW
Bereavement Coordinator
Merrimack Valley Hospice

Share

Home Health VNA names Joanna Fontaine, RN, Manager of the Maternal and Child Health Program

Lawrence, MA – Joanna Fontaine, RN, has been named Manager of the Maternal and Child Health Program of Home Health VNA, one of the largest and most respected home health care agencies in the region.  In this role Fontaine will be responsible for program, personnel, clinical and administrative operations.  She will also oversee a team of highly skilled registered nurses who provide expert medical care and support to mothers, infants, children and families in more than 100 communities in both Massachusetts and New Hampshire.

“Joanna is a highly skilled professional with expertise in home health care, clinical operations and high risk pediatric populations,” said Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, Vice President of Clinical Services and Chief Clinical Officer of Home Health Foundation.  “She is a great addition to our expert Maternal and Child Health team.”

Ms. Fontaine resides in Manchester NH.

Home Health VNA the leader in home health care, is affiliated with Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.   Together the three agencies serve more than 100 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.  For more information, visit our website at HomeHealthVNA.org.

Share

Home Health VNA Receives Major Grant Funding from Cardinal Health Foundation, Joins Learning Collaborative

E3 Patient Safety Grant supports healthcare providers as they work to improve the effectiveness, excellence and efficiency of patient care

Lawrence, MA — The Cardinal Health Foundation announced that it has awarded Home Health VNA grant funding from its E3 Patient Safety Grant Program. Home Health VNA is one of 13 grantees who have received multi-year grants to support their work in improving health outcomes for high-risk patients.

“We are thrilled to receive this major grant from Cardinal Health Foundation in support of our project to develop and implement a multidisciplinary approach to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) management for patients with moderate to severe disease,” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health VNA.

7/14/15: UMASS lowell: Graduate School features. photo by Tory Germann“This three year, $150,000 grant will allow us to develop new and innovative interventions in the care and treatment of patients with COPD,” said Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, Vice President of Clinical Services for Home Health VNA, and Chief Clinical Officer for Home Health Foundation.  “We are confident that, over the course of this grant, patients and families will become better prepared and able to partner effectively with their clinicians, and will make informed decisions about their goals of care for improved outcomes and quality of life.”

Home Health VNA will also join other 2016 E3 Patient Safety grantees in a learning collaborative facilitated by the Alliance for Integrated Medication Management (AIMM). The collaborative is designed to help the organizations share their learning and more quickly implement evidence-based practices.

Since 2008, the Cardinal Health Foundation has invested $16 million to hundreds of healthcare organizations through its E3 Patient Safety Grant Program. “We support a wide array of patient safety work, but the focus is always on accelerating the rate of change with two goals: improved patient outcomes and reduced healthcare costs,” said Dianne Radigan, Vice President of Community Relations at Cardinal Health.

Because of the complexities in healthcare and healthcare systems, it takes an average of 17 years for evidence-based practices to be fully implemented into healthcare practices, according to The National Institutes of Health. “Within a year or two, recent grantees are affecting change, eliminating errors and creating lasting improvement,” Radigan said. “They are reducing readmissions to hospitals, reducing lengths-of-stay and, most importantly, saving lives. On behalf of Cardinal Health, we are pleased to support the work of Home Health VNA.”

About Home Health VNA
Home Health VNA is the regional leader in the delivery of home and community based medical care and support to patients and families.  Highly skilled teams of home care professionals provide skilled nursing, rehabilitation and other specialized medical care designed to maximize health, independence and quality of life.  More than 280 nurses, physical, occupational, and speech therapists, social workers, counselors and home health aides provide the highest quality medical care for patients, and teach and support families and caregivers.  Medically advanced programs in wound care, IV therapy, diabetes, maternal and child health, chronic disease management, psychiatric nursing and social work are the most innovative in the region.

Home Health VNA operates under Home Health Foundation (HHF) which also includes Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.  HHF is a multi-state, full service provider of certified home health, palliative, hospice and private duty services. Together the three agencies serve 110 cities and towns throughout Northeastern Massachusetts, the Merrimack Valley and Southern New Hampshire, with five offices and a 21 suite hospice house, which oversee a combined average daily census of 3,500 patients.   In addition, Merrimack Valley Hospice, operating in partnership with York Hospital, provides comprehensive end-of-life care and bereavement services in 13 communities in southern Maine.

About the Cardinal Health Foundation
The Cardinal Health Foundation supports local, national and international programs that improve health care efficiency, effectiveness and excellence and the overall wellness of the communities where Cardinal Health’s (NYSE:CAH) nearly 37,000 employees live and work. The Cardinal Health Foundation also offers grants to encourage community service among its employees and works through international agencies to donate much-needed medical supplies and funding to those who need them in times of disaster; because Cardinal Health is #AllInForGood. To learn more, visit www.CardinalHealth.com/community and visit the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/CardinalHealthFoundation.

About the Alliance for Integrated Medication Management
The Alliance for Integrated Medication Management (AIMM) is a non-profit organization working to support wide-spread adoption of team-based medication management services into the care of high-risk, high-cost patients suffering from multiple chronic health conditions. AIMM partners with healthcare providers, schools of pharmacy, payers, and other stakeholders to drive change in our health care system from the ground up by creating accountability for patient safety and health, improving quality of care, and championing new payment models to coordinate care for high-risk and complex patients who can benefit from a comprehensive medication management approach.

Share

Kristine DiFiore appointed to the Board of Directors for the Human Resources State Council of New Hampshire

Lawrence, MA – Kristine DiFiore, SHRM-CP, PHR, Vice President of Human Resources (HR) for the Home Health Foundation, has been appointed to the Board of Directors of the Human Resources State Council of New Hampshire, an affiliate of the Society for Human Resources Management, the leading provider of information and support of HR professionals and advancing the practice of HR management. In this role DiFiore will work as a Program Director, serving as a liaison to each of the New Hampshire chapters to establish best practices, provide guidance to other members and councils and provide state-wide strategies for program development.  In addition, she will work closely with the State Council Conference Director, Legislative Director, and the State Council Director to aid in the development of each of the State Council conferences.

DiFiore has more than 15 years of HR leadership experience in nonprofits serving the Greater Merrimack Valley.  She is certified as a Professional in Human Resources (PHR) and is a Certified Professional of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM-CP).  She is also an active participant in industry associations on both state and local levels including Greater Merrimack Valley HR Association (member), Greater Merrimack Valley HR Association (Wellness Committee and member), Home Care Alliance of Massachusetts (HR Group and Membership Committee) and the Allied Health Advisory (HR Group & Curriculum Design Committee)

DiFiore lives in Andover with her husband and family.

Home Health Foundation, the leader in home health care, is comprised of affiliate agencies Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.   Together the three agencies serve more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.

Share

Then and now – continuing a 120 year tradition of safe and reliable house calls

Lawrence, MA – Home Health Foundation, which includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc., recently rolled out a fleet of new leased cars to be used by visiting nurses who travel throughout the region caring for patients.

When the agency was founded in 1895, nurses walked or bicycled to patient homes. Cars were only used when nurses traveled to rural areas to care for patients. Today, on any given day, Home Health Foundation cares for more than 3,500 patients in 110 cities and towns. A safe and reliable car is essential for quality patient care.

“Our clinical staff travels approximately 2.3 million miles per year caring for patients and families in the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, Southern New Hampshire and Southern Maine,” said John Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO. “Our new leasing program is a great option for those staff who normally accrue hundreds of miles on their own car in a typical work week. It also increases our visibility in the community.”

Home Health Foundation, the leader in home health care, is comprised of affiliate agencies Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. Together the three agencies serve more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.

Share

HomeCare, Inc. home health aide Jane Rizza receives prestigious award by the Home Care Alliance of Massachusetts

HomeCare, Inc. home health aide Jane Rizza receives prestigious award by the Home Care Alliance of MassachusettsLawrence, MA – Jane Rizza, a 28 year employee of HomeCare, Inc., has been awarded the prestigious Home Care Aide of the Year award from the Home Care Alliance of Massachusetts, a non-profit trade association of more than 200 home care agencies that promotes home care as an integral part of the health care delivery system. The award is in recognition of her exceptional skill and commitment and for the high level of caring she provides to patients and their families. The award was presented at the Home Care Alliance Showcase and Star Awards event on Tuesday, June 14, at Granite Links Golf Club in Quincy.

“Jane is kind, empathetic and compassionate,” said Theresa Petrie, RN, BSN, Vice President for HomeCare, Inc. “She has a strong work ethic and excellent home care skills. We are so proud that she has been recognized for her dedication to her profession and to our agency.”

HomeCare, Inc. is a private, non-profit home health agency serving more than 110 communities in Northeastern Massachusetts, the Merrimack Valley and Southern New Hampshire. As the largest provider of home care services in this region, HomeCare, Inc. offers specialized, supportive programs for homebound individuals and education and prevention services for elders and families. HomeCare, Inc. paraprofessionals provide personal care, meal preparation, medically supervised supportive care and assistance for frail elders who wish to remain at home and in the community.

Ms. Rizza lives in Raymond, New Hampshire with her husband and family.

HomeCare, Inc. is an agency of the Home Health Foundation and affiliated with Home Health VNA and Merrimack Valley Hospice.

Share

Flowers and Friends Grow into Successful Fundraiser for Merrimack Valley Hospice

FlowerShow2016 The Friends of Merrimack Valley Hospice hosted their 3rd annual Spring Has Sprung fundraiser brunch on Sunday, April 17 with a special floral arranging demonstration by Stephen Janavicus of Flowers by Steve, flower sales and prize raffles. Support for the event brought in more than $24,000 that day to benefit Merrimack Valley Hospice House and the services of Merrimack Valley Hospice.

Board vice president, Susan Desmet announced the 2016 Friends of Merrimack Valley annual gift commitment which includes specialized medication and computer carts to Merrimack Valley Hospice House located in Haverhill. These carts will enable the nurses to spend more time at the patient’s bedside. Additional funds raised during the year will be put toward charitable care for those facing financial hardship, so that they may receive quality, end-of-life care they deserve and need.

FlowerShow20162“The work of hospice and those cared for by Merrimack Valley Hospice is never forgotten,” said Stephen Janavicus, president of Friend of Merrimack Valley Hospice. “We are deeply appreciative of those who shared in making the Friends of Merrimack Valley Hospice 3rd annual Spring Has Sprung fundraiser brunch and flower show such a huge success!”

The Friends of Merrimack Valley Hospice was created by a passionate group of individuals touched by the work of Merrimack Valley Hospice and the Merrimack Valley Hospice House. Friends of Merrimack Valley Hospice is an auxiliary, all-volunteer service organization supporting Merrimack Valley Hospice’s patients and their families by raising awareness and funds through yearly activities. Membership is open to all and information is available at www.MerrimackValleyHospice.org/friends or by calling 978-552-4927.

Share

5th Annual Legacy of Leading benefit dinner raises more than $80,000 for Home Health Foundation

VNA_Dinner315Lawrence, Mass. – On Thursday, April 7, 2016 more than 250 guests gathered in support of the agencies of Home Health Foundation, and to honor several leaders in the community at the 5th annual Legacy of Leading recognition dinner. Honored were Mark and Susan Cocozza, community philanthropists, and Dr. Lane Glenn, President of Northern Essex Community College. Mark and Susan were recognized for their commitment to quality healthcare and their on-going support of Merrimack Valley Hospice and the Hospice House. Lane was acknowledged for his advocacy for education and community services and his tireless efforts to ensure the Merrimack Valley has a well-trained healthcare workforce now and in the future.

“As friends and partners in our work, Mark and Susan Cocozza and Lane Glenn enable our organization to better serve patients and families with the quality care they deserve,” said John Albert, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation, which includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. “Both shared stories of how they were touched by the agencies of Home Health Foundation which deepened their commitment to the critical work that we do.”

The event raised more than $80,000 in support of programs dedicated to assisting the patients and families served by Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.

Sponsors of the event included:

Leader Sponsors: Clive and Suzanne Fazioli Charitable Foundation

Benefactor Sponsors: Byram Healthcare, Mark and Susan Cocozza, Northern Essex Community College, Pentucket Bank, Pentucket Medical Associates, and TD Bank

Ambassador Sponsors: Demoulas Foundation, Eastern Bank, Enterprise Bank, Haverhill Bank, Lawrence General Hospital, North Shore Bank, Rogers Spring Hill Garden & Farm Center, and Trinity EMS

Advocate Sponsors: Atlantic Charter Insurance Company, Atwood Memorial Company, Elder Services of the Merrimack Valley, Inc., Fallon Health, Greater Lawrence Family Health Center, H.L. Farmer & Sons Funeral Homes , Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union, Mary Immaculate Health/Care Services, Merrimack Valley Magazine, Pest End, Inc., PrideSTAR EMS, and Zampell Companies

Friend Sponsors: Align Credit Union, Anna Jaques Hospital, Cataldo Ambulance, Circle Health, Commencement Photos, Inc., CoreMedical Group, Donahue Group for Keller Williams Realty, Donoghue, Barrett & Singal, Element Care, Fuze, Holy Family Hospital, Home Care Specialists, HUB International, Jackson Lumber and Millwork, Jim and Susan Tinagero, Long Term Pharmacy Solutions, Inc., Lowell Five Cent Savings Bank, Maguire Pest Control, The Meadows at Edgewood, Merrimack Valley Credit Union, Morgan Stanley Wealth Management Wealth Management, Newburyport Five Cents Savings Bank, Nichols Village, Red Mill Graphics, Royal Jewelers, The Savings Bank, Skoler, Abbott & Presser PC, Unemployment Cost Reduction Corp., and University of Massachusetts Lowell

The Home Health Foundation includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. Our organization continues to deliver the highest quality home health and hospice care for infants, children, adults and elders in both home and community settings. Our service area includes more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire, and in southern Maine as York Hospital Hospice.

Share

HomeCare, Inc. meets updated standard for re-accreditation with the Home Care Alliance of Massachusetts

Lawrence, MA – HomeCare, Inc., a private-pay home care agency of Home Health Foundation, has reaffirmed its commitment to quality care and ethical business practices by earning re-accreditation from the Home Care Alliance of Massachusetts. The Alliance, which represents 190 home health and elder care agencies across Massachusetts, created an accreditation protocol to promote quality services, ethical business standards, and superior employment practices in an industry that lacks meaningful licensure in Massachusetts even while it grows in popularity.

“We are proud to continue to meet these strict accreditation standards that convey HomeCare, Inc.’s commitment to quality,” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation. “Peace of mind for our clients and their families is our primary goal. By maintaining our accreditation we demonstrate that we not only promote quality, but we actually deliver on that promise.”

The Home Care Alliance launched this accreditation program for private pay agencies (agencies not paid by Medicare or Medicaid), in July, 2010. Since that time, over 60 agencies have submitted documentation to show that they meet the standards established by the Alliance. The standards were recently revised to raise the bar to make them even more stringent for agencies seeking re-accreditation.

“The Alliance’s accreditation program demonstrates our leadership in an area that is becoming more and more important to the health care delivery system in Massachusetts,” said Patricia Kelleher, Executive Director of the Home Care Alliance of Massachusetts. “The revised standards highlight our agencies’ best practices, and will help guide the public as they choose who will take care of their loved ones in their homes.”

Home Health Foundation, the leader in home health care, is comprised of affiliate agencies Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. Together the three agencies serve more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.

Share

A free guide for patients living with heart failure is available through the new Hearts at Home program of Home Health VNA

Lawrence, MA –  In honor of American Heart Month,  Home Health VNA is offering a free guide “Caring for Your Heart: Living Well with Heart Failure” available here or by phone at 978-552-4186.  The goal of this guide is to help patients learn about heart failure and what they can do to reduce symptoms and better control their disease.  The guide is being offered in conjunction with the new Hearts at Home program of Home Health VNA.

If you have heart failure you are not alone.  Heart failure is one of the most common reasons people age 65 and older go to the hospital and the 2nd leading cause of death in both Massachusetts and New Hampshire.   Hearts at Home has been specifically designed to provide patients with the nursing care and support they need to control heart failure symptoms so they can feel better and manage well at home.

Hearts at Home includes nursing care and teaching, diet and nutrition counseling, tips on exercise and activities, information on what to do when symptoms increase, and educational materials.  Patients must meet Medicare and/or health insurance guidelines for home health care in order to be eligible for the program.   For more information on the Hearts at Home program, click here or call 978-552-4045.

Home Health VNA, the leader in home health care, is a not-for-profit agency affiliated with HomeCare, Inc. and Merrimack Valley Hospice.  Together the three agencies serve more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.

Share

Merrimack Valley Hospice to offer Grief Support Group for Men

Lawrence MA. – Merrimack Valley Hospice will be offering a Men’s Support Group beginning on Tuesday, February 9, 2016 and running for 12 weeks through April 26, 2016. The group will be held in the Griffin-White meeting room at Merrimack Valley Hospice House located at 360 North Avenue in Haverhill, MA.

This support group is designed to provide a safe place and a supportive environment for men who are grieving to share their experiences and feelings, and to learn about the grieving process. It will be led by specially trained facilitators, Michael Cooper and Richard Davis, and focus on the issues specific to men who have lost a loved one.

For more information on this support group and to register, call Lois at 978-552-4537.

Merrimack Valley Hospice is a not-for-profit agency providing comfort care and supportive services to patients nearing the end of life, and bereavement services to their families and loved ones. Together with Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., the agencies provide a full continuum of home health and hospice care in more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice.

Share

Home Health VNA receives Deficiency-Free DPH Survey Rating

Lawrence, MA – Home Health VNA recently received a deficiency-free home health care agency survey rating by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH).

DPH periodically reviews home health care agencies, hospitals and skilled nursing and rehabilitation facilities to ensure compliance with State and Federal regulations and to assess the quality of care provided. The DPH surveyors arrived unannounced on Wednesday, December 30, and began an immediate, thorough review of clinical documentation, administrative and clinical procedures, employee files, quality data and collection and contracts. In addition, they conducted interviews with clinicians and went on home visits to assess care in the home. At the conclusion of the four day survey, Home Health VNA was found to be in full compliance with all the conditions and regulations of a quality home health care agency.

“With changing and increasingly stringent regulations, achieving a deficiency-free rating is extremely difficult to accomplish,” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation. “The results demonstrate that we have dedicated and talented clinicians and support staff who are committed to our agency and the patients and families who rely on us for care,”

Home Health Foundation, the leader in home health care, is comprised of affiliate agencies Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. Together the three agencies serve more than 100 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.

Share

Home Health Foundation names John Merry as Director of Community Business Development

JohnMerry-011116Lawrence, MA – John Merry of Westford, MA has been named Director of Community Business Development for Home Health Foundation, one of the largest and most respected home care agencies in Massachusetts, comprised of Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. In this role Merry will oversee the development and implementation of strategic, agency-wide marketing and sales plans to maintain and grow collaborative relationships with the medical community throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire.

Prior to joining Home Health Foundation, Merry held regional and national health care marketing and business development positions at several distinguished health care organizations. He brings a wealth of expertise in physician and hospital referrals, market analysis and sales planning and implementation.

“John is a highly skilled professional with an outstanding record of customer service and business development,” said Donna Deveau, Vice President of External Relations and Development for Home Health Foundation. “He places tremendous value on strong collaborative relationships with our hospitals and health systems, physicians and other facility partners.”

Home Health Foundation, the leader in home healh care, is comprised of affiliate agencies Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. Together the three agencies serve more than 100 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.

Share

Mary Jane Thomas named Board Chair of Home Health Foundation’s Board of Trustees

$RWK69E6Lawrence MA – Mary Jane “MJ” Thomas of Bartlett, NH has been named Chair of the Board of Trustees for Home Health Foundation. She previously served as a board member of the Seacoast Visiting Nurse Association in North Hampton, NH, joining the board of Home Health Foundation in 2009, upon the merger of Seacoast VNA and Home Health VNA.

Thomas succeeds Atty. Daniel Hayes, who had served as Board Chair since 2013 and oversaw the 7 suite wing expansion of Merrimack Valley Hospice House and a capital campaign that raised over 2 million dollars to fund the new wing. Hayes will continue to serve as a member of the Board.

During her three year term as Board Chair, Ms. Thomas will oversee the Executive Committee in addition to continuing in her role as a member of Home Health Foundation’s Finance Committee.

“MJ is a very dedicated and philanthropic supporter of the work we do, with a deep understanding of our impact in the community and healthcare landscape,” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation. “The Executive Committee and Board of Trustees look forward to her leadership to further the mission and vision of our agencies.”

Home Health Foundation, the leader in home health care, is comprised of affiliate agencies Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. Together the three agencies serve more than 100 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.

Share

Kingston Veterans Club presents annual gift to Merrimack Valley Hospice

CandlesHaverhill_151119_0445Lawrence, MA – The Kingston Veterans Club recently presented Merrimack Valley Hospice with a generous gift in honor of the compassionate care provided to members and their families this past year. The $500.00 gift was presented by club member Greg Queene at the agency’s annual Candles of Remembrance ceremony held at the Renaissance Country Club in Haverhill, MA.

“So many people come together at Candles of Remembrance to celebrate the lives of those they have lost. Many choose to make a donation in support of Merrimack Valley Hospice as a way to pay tribute to those who have passed and to help others receive hospice care when needed,” said Donna Deveau, Vice President of External Relations and Development for Home Health Foundation. “We are touched that the Kingston Veterans Club chooses to make their annual gift at this event, to honor the lives of our US Veterans who served this country and to help support the services that we provide to their members and the community. This is such a meaningful gift.”

The Kingston Veterans Club was established in 1946 by a local group of returning, WWII veterans. They coordinate a variety of annual fundraising activities to support local community organizations and veteran services.

Merrimack Valley Hospice is a not-for-profit agency providing comfort care and supportive services to patients nearing the end of life, and bereavement services to their families and loved ones. Together with Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., the agencies provide a full continuum of home health and hospice care in more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice.

Share

Donation of holiday gift baskets for those served by Home Care, Inc.

December 29, 2015 – Lawrence, MA and Andover, MA – The employees of each department at the Andover Town Offices shared in the holiday spirit with their donation of gift baskets created for home-bound seniors in need. Staff from HomeCare, Inc., one of the not-for-profit agencies of Home Health Foundation, delivered the cheerful baskets to clients receiving home care support in Greater Lawrence.

“This is a wonderful gift of neighborly kindness. We are so grateful for the outpouring of support for those we serve at this time of year and all year long,” said Theresa Petrie, Vice President of HomeCare, Inc.

“Our staff are happy to help others at this time of year by putting together baskets that might bring cheer to others,” said Kim Stamas who organizes the basket collection and delivery to HomeCare, Inc. at the Town Offices each year. “Having them delivered by the staff of HomeCare, Inc., who care for so many seniors in the community, is a nice way to combine our efforts to make the season bright.”

Pictured Left to Right: Laurie Ouellette (HCI), Jenn Lawlor, Kim Stamas, Jessica Downing, Sophie Stahley, Janice Coppolino, Kathy Bowler (HCI). The baskets, donated by the staff of the Andover Town Offices, were delivered to those homebound in Greater Lawrence.

 

Share

Merrimack Valley Hospice Offers Free Grief Support for a Substance Related Loss

Lawrence – Merrimack Valley Hospice is offering a free support group for those who are coping with the loss of a loved one due to drugs, alcohol or other substance. This specialized support group, facilitated by counselors Lois Marra and Nancy Thornton, is designed to help participants learn about the unique features of this type of grief and the profound, complex emotions involved. Participants will share their experience and learn from each other in an environment of support, understanding and compassion. Sessions are tailored to meet the group’s needs and will help participants understand and process their emotions so they can begin healing.

Cosponsored by HL Farmer & Sons Aftercare Program, this ongoing group will begin on Wednesday, January 13, 2016, from 6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., in the Griffin-White conference room at Merrimack Valley Hospice House, 360 North Ave in Haverhill, MA. It is free and open to the public, but registration is required. For more information, or to register, contact Lois at 978-552-4537.

Merrimack Valley Hospice is a not-for-profit agency providing comfort care and supportive services to patients nearing the end of life, and bereavement services to their families and loved ones. Together with Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., the agencies provide a full continuum of home health and hospice care in more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice.

Share

Merrimack Valley Hospice Offers Free Grief Support Group

Lawrence, MA – Merrimack Valley Hospice is offering “Learning to Live with Loss” a free, ongoing support group for anyone who has experienced the loss of a loved one. This group, facilitated by counselors Lois Marra and Nancy Thornton, is scheduled for the 3rd Tuesday of each month, from January 19 through June 21, in the rectory behind Sacred Hearts Church, 165 South Main Street, Bradford, MA, from 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

“Learning to Live with Loss” is designed to help participants understand the grief process, share their experience, and support each other in a facilitated environment. Sessions are tailored to meet the group’s needs and will cover many difference topics including grief, loss and healing. If you have questions, or would like to register, contact Lois at 800-933-5593 ext. 4537.

Merrimack Valley Hospice is a not-for-profit agency providing comfort care and supportive services to patients nearing the end of life, and bereavement services to their families and loved ones. Together with Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., the agencies provide a full continuum of home health and hospice care in more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice.

Share

Merrimack Valley Hospice Offers Free Loss of an Adult Child Support Group

Lawrence, MA –Merrimack Valley Hospice is offering “Grief Support for the Loss of an Adult Child”, a free support group for anyone who is grieving this particular type of a loss. The sessions will begin Tuesday, January 19, from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., at the Merrimack Valley Hospice House, 360 North Ave in Haverhill, MA. The support group, co-sponsored by HL Farmer & Sons Funeral Homes, and facilitated by counselors Lois Marra and Nancy Thornton, will meet for 10 consecutive Tuesdays.

“Grief Support for the Loss of an Adult Child” is designed to help people who have recently experienced this type of loss learn about the grief process, share their experience, and support each other in a facilitated group environment. Sessions are tailored to meet the group’s needs and will cover many difference topics including grief, loss and healing. If you have questions, or would like to register, please contact Bereavement Coordinator Lois Marra at 800-933-5593 ext. 4537.

Merrimack Valley Hospice is a not-for-profit agency offering comprehensive medical and supportive care to terminally ill patients and their loved ones. Together with Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., the agencies provide a full continuum of home health and hospice care in more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire.

Share

York Hospital Hospice Offers Free Grief Support Group

York, ME – York Hospital Hospice is offering “Learning to Live with Loss”, a free support group for anyone who has experienced the loss of a loved one. The sessions will begin Wednesday, January 13, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., at the Ellis Conference Room at York Hospital, 15 Hospital Drive, York, ME. The support group, facilitated by counselors Maureen Johnston and Mick Cooper, will meet for 10 consecutive Wednesdays.

“Learning to Live with Loss” is designed to help people who have recently lost a loved one learn about the grief process, share their experience, and support each other in a facilitated group environment. Sessions are tailored to meet the group’s needs and will cover many difference topics including grief, loss and healing. If you have questions, or would like to register, please contact Bereavement Coordinator Lois Marra at 800-933-5593 ext. 4537, or 207-337-7333.

York Hospital Hospice, in partnership with Merrimack Valley Hospice, offers comfort care and palliative services for patients nearing the end of life. Whether patients are at home, in a hospital or a long-term care or assisted living facility, York Hospital Hospice provides compassionate physical, emotional and spiritual care for patients, and will coordinate grief and bereavement support for families and caregivers.

Share

East Coast Camaro Club Continues Support of Merrimack Valley Hospice with 2015 Donation

December 15, 2015 – Lawrence, MA – Representatives from the Board of Directors of the East Coast Camaro Club (ECCC) presented a check in the amount of $5000 to Merrimack Valley Hospice. This generous donation represented proceeds from the ECCC’s 34th Annual All-Vehicle Car Show hosted in August. The club’s ongoing support of Merrimack Valley Hospice helps the non-profit to provide care to patients and families as they confront the challenges of advanced illness and end of life at home or at Merrimack Valley Hospice House in Haverhill.

“Many of us have sought the support of hospice as we navigated the final days of a loved one’s life. It is a comfort to have the experience and compassion of hospice staff and volunteers to ensure comfort and peace at the end of life,” says George Giroux, chairman of the East Coast Camaro Club. “We are honored to be able to make a contribution in support of Merrimack Valley Hospice and those unique individuals who dedicate themselves to helping patients and families at such a crucial time.”

“We are thankful for the generosity of all who attend the East Coast Camaro Club’s annual car show,” says John Albert, president and CEO of Home Health Foundation and Merrimack Valley Hospice. “This is a longstanding event and a great day that helps people to understand and appreciate the multi-faceted services available through our agency and the very special people working to care for all that need our support.”

ECCCdonation_151130_0617

Members of the East Coast Camaro Club Board of Directors present a check for $5,000 to Merrimack Valley Hospice. Donna Deveau, vice president of Home Health Foundation; John Albert, president and CEO of Home Health Foundation; Dan Wolfe; Jim Tweed, East Coast Camaro Club president elect; George Giroux, East Coast Camaro Club chairman; Rueben Cortez, East Coast Camaro Club treasurer.

About Merrimack Valley Hospice
Merrimack Valley Hospice, affiliated with Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., is a not-for-profit agency dedicated to serving the needs of terminally ill patients and their families. Together, they serve more than 100 communities throughout Northeastern Massachusetts, the Merrimack Valley, Southern New Hampshire and Southern Maine.

Share

Theresa Petrie RN, BSN, elected Chair of Executive Committee of the Mayors Health Task Force

PetrieLawrence, MA – Theresa Petrie, RN, BSN, Vice President of HomeCare, Inc., has been elected Chair of the Executive Committee of the Mayor’s Health Task Force (MHTF) for the City of Lawrence. The MHTF, founded in 2002, is a broad-based coalition of nearly 80 member organizations whose main focus is to enhance the health of the Lawrence community through the application of public health policies and initiatives. The Executive Committee is responsible for the development and implementation of guidelines and procedures that guide the MHTF.

“I am honored to work collaboratively with the mayor and our member organizations to further the mission and vision of MHTF,” said Petrie. “Together we will assure that public health issues remain paramount on the political agenda of the city, while establishing new partnerships that build community capacity to address health disparities.”

Ms. Petrie lives in Andover with her husband and family.

HomeCare, Inc., the leader in Private Care Services, is affiliated with Home Health VNA and Merrimack Valley Hospice. Together, the three agencies serve more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire.

Share

Home Health VNA recognized nationally for patient satisfaction

John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO, and Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, Chief Clinical Officer and Vice President of Clinical ServicesLawrence, MA – Home Health VNA was recently ranked as one of the country’s highest performing home care agencies in the area of patient satisfaction by scoring in the top 25% of Fazzi Associates National Patient Satisfaction survey called the Home Health Care Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems or HHCAHPS. This survey is one of home care’s oldest, largest and most respected patient satisfaction benchmarking systems. Agencies in the top 25% are recognized as proven leaders that have excelled in one of the most important measures of an agency’s quality program.

“Home Health VNA has a 120 year history of excellence in patient care outcomes and in satisfaction with care,” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO. “It’s a privilege to care for patients and families in our communities. We honor that privilege with our commitment to patient satisfaction.”

“Our staff is dedicated to providing the highest standards of care to our patients every day,” said Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, Chief Clinical Officer and Vice President of Clinical Services. “Being named among the best agencies in the country for patient satisfaction recognizes that dedication.”

Home Health VNA is a not-for-profit agency affiliated with HomeCare, Inc. and Merrimack Valley Hospice. Together, the three agencies serve more than 110 communities throughout Northeastern Massachusetts, the Merrimack Valley and Southern New Hampshire.

Share

York Hospital Hospice hosted Evening of Remembrance

York, Maine – The Hartley Mason Reserve was ablaze on the evening of November 5 as more than 60 people gathered to honor loved ones lost at the 3rd annual Candles of Remembrance Ceremony of York Hospital Hospice. The evening was an opportunity for anyone in the community who had lost a loved one to reminisce and cherish special memories with friends and family. Each attendee was given a vigil candle and invited to pass the flame and say the name of his or her loved one. A bereavement counselor from York Hospital Hospice led a brief non-denominational service. Following the outdoor service, an indoor reception and Tribute Book viewing followed at the York Harbor Inn. The Tribute Book lists the names of those honored by loved ones by participation in the memorial giving feature of the event. It will be placed on display at the York Hospital Hospice office on Long Sands Road and online at www.YorkHospitalHospice.org.

YHHCandles_151105_0418_1“Our annual candle lighting ceremony is an opportunity for individuals and families to pay tribute to their loved ones as the holiday season approaches,” said John G. Albert, President and CEO of York Hospital Hospice. “It was wonderful to witness the collective show of support as the community came together in the spirit of remembrance.”

Memorial donations and additions to the online Tribute Book are welcome at any time. For more information contact the York Hospital Hospice office at 207-337-7333.

York Hospital Hospice, in partnership with Merrimack Valley Hospice, offers comfort care and palliative services for patients nearing the end-of-life. Whether patients are at home, in a hospital or a long-term care or assisted living facility, York Hospital Hospice provides compassionate physical, emotional and spiritual care for patients, and grief and bereavement support for families and caregivers. For more information, visit www.yorkhospitalhospice.org.

Share

Coping with the Holidays

Merrimack Valley Hospice Offers Free Coping with the Holidays Grief Support Group

Lawrence – Merrimack Valley Hospice is offering Coping with the Holidays and Special Days, an open support program for people who have experienced a loss of a loved one and may need additional support during the holiday season.

The holidays can be especially difficult for people who are reminded of happy gatherings and traditions of the past. At this group participants will learn creative ways to remember and acknowledge the special person they have lost and interact with others who are grieving. The discussion will focus on the additional sadness often experienced throughout the holiday season. The Coping with Special Days and Holidays program is facilitated by bereavement counselors from Merrimack Valley Hospice.

The program will be held Tuesday, December 1, 2015 from 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., at Sacred Hearts Church, 165 South Main Street in Bradford, MA. The session is free and open to the public but registration is required. To register, or for more information, contact Lois at 978-552-4537.

Merrimack Valley Hospice, with Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., provide a full continuum of home health and hospice care in more than 110 communities throughout the region.

Share

York Hospital Hospice Volunteers Honored

York Hospital Hospice Volunteers Honored for their Talent and Teamwork

YHH-VolunteerAppreciationYork, Maine – The year 2015 may not have been the finest for the Boston Red Sox but that didn’t stop a great group of volunteers from York Hospital Hospice from celebrating their “team” and the valuable services they provide to patients and families. On Wednesday, October 7, they gathered at The York Harbor Inn to be honored for their time, talent and teamwork on behalf of the agency.

In his remarks, John Albert, President and CEO of York Hospital Hospice, summed up the evening theme nicely when he said “It takes a great team, working together for a common goal that gets you to the play-offs and beyond. We are so fortunate to have that great team – one that includes people with diverse interests, skills and talents who work together to benefit York Hospital Hospice and the patients and families in our care.”

In the past 12 months York Hospital Hospice volunteers provided assistance and companionship to patients and families, knitted prayer shawls, assisted with bereavement groups, helped with training and more. For more information about York Hospital Hospice including volunteer opportunities call 207- 337-7333 or visit www.Yorkhospital.com/hospice.

York Hospital Hospice, in partnership with Merrimack Valley Hospice, offers comfort care and palliative services for patients nearing the end-of-life. Whether patients are at home, in a hospital or a long-term care or assisted living facility, York Hospital Hospice provides compassionate physical, emotional and spiritual care for patients, and will coordinate grief and bereavement support for families and caregivers. For more information, visit www.yorkhospital.com/hospice.

Share

Free Holiday Family Grief Support Group

Merrimack Valley Hospice Offers Free Holiday Family Grief Support Group

Lawrence -Merrimack Valley Hospice is offering a special program for children and teens ages 6-14 and their families who have experienced a loss. Coping with Special Days and Holidays is day-long program for children who may need additional support during the holiday season due to the loss of a loved one. The holidays can be especially difficult for children who are reminded of happy holidays and traditions of the past. At this group, children learn creative ways to remember and acknowledge the special person they have lost. They also interact with other children who are grieving and learn that it is normal to be sad during the holidays. The Coping with Special Days and Holidays program is facilitated by bereavement counselors and expressive therapists who have special training in the grief needs of children.

The program will be held Saturday, December 5, 2015 from 9:30am – 2:30pm at Merrimack Valley Hospice, 360 Merrimack Street, Building 9, the 4th floor, Lawrence, MA. Registration is required. If you have questions or would like to register contact Lois at 978-552-4537.

Merrimack Valley Hospice, with Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., provide a full continuum of home health and hospice care in more than 110 communities throughout the region.

Share

Merrimack Valley Hospice Raises $125,000 at Game ON

Merrimack Valley Hospice Raises $125,000 at Game ON! Food, Wine, Beer Pairing and Silent Auction

Lawrence, Mass. – Over 350 sponsors and guests joined in the fun and placed their bids at Game On! Food, Wine, Beer Pairing and Silent Auction to benefit Merrimack Valley Hospice. The event was held Thursday, September 24th at the Black Swan Country Club in Georgetown, MA.

The silent auction offered over 100 packages including premium sports tickets and autographed memorabilia, weekend getaways, nights on the town and a very popular “Meet and Greet” with New England Patriot’s Rob Gronkowski.

A variety of food, wine and beer selections were served while guests had the opportunity to enjoy giant versions of nostalgic board games, try their hand at the Wine and Beer bottle ring toss or sit for a caricature drawing or psychic reading.

We would like to thank our generous sponsors, guests, in kind donors and the many volunteers, who helped us to raise $125,000 to benefit Merrimack Valley Hospice and the patients and families we support.

This year’s lead sponsors included the Fazioli Charitable Foundation as Premier Sponsor and Pentucket Bank as Grand Cru Sponsor. TD Bank was the Chateau Sponsor.

Reserve Sponsors included Byram Healthcare, Coram/CVS Specialty Infusion Services, Fred C. Church Insurance, Lupoli Companies, Pentucket Medical Associates and Trinity EMS.

Champagne Sponsors were Align Credit Union, Eastern Bank, Enterprise Bank, Grella Financial Services, Haverhill Bank, H.L. Farmer and Sons Funeral Home, Holy Family Hospital, Home Care Specialists, Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union, Lawrence General Hospital, Maguire Pest Control, Merrimack Valley Magazine, Northern Essex Community College, Parker Hannifin Corp, Pest-End Inc., Rogers Spring Hill Farm, Senior Whole Health, Thinking Phone Networks, and Winchester Financial Group.

Joining the Sommelier Sponsors were Arrow Paper Company, Atlantic Charter Insurance, Atwood Memorial Company, Elder Services of the Merrimack Valley, Greater Lawrence Family Health Center, HUB International, Kiwanis Club of Haverhill, Lowell Five Cents Savings Bank, Mary Immaculate Health/Care Services, Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, Pridestar EMS, Red Mill Graphics, and The Savings Bank.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Brian Dempsey Committee, Circle Health, CoreMedical Group, D’Youville Life and Wellness Community, Galinsky Plumbing and Heating, Georgetown Bank, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, Healthwyse, Jackson Lumber and Millwork, Long Term Pharmacy Solutions, Inc., Nichols Village, North Shore Bank, Skoller, Abbott & Presser, Mr. and Mrs. Dale F. Rogers, and Dr. Mary Toomey supported as Connoisseur Sponsors.

About Merrimack Valley Hospice

Merrimack Valley Hospice has been providing end-of-life care in our community for more than 35 years, and is one of the most respected not-for-profit hospices in the region.

Merrimack Valley Hospice House, a unique and vital component of Merrimack Valley Hospice’s continuum of care since 2009, is an acute care facility providing exceptional palliative and end-of-life care in a comfortable, home-like setting.

KarenGiacobba-AgnesLeonard-KelleyMacDonald-JaneCzerlonka JohnAlbert-ScottCollins AlexCoakley-KellyBarbin-DonnaDeveau-EmilyDingee-BethDimitruk-ErinMasterson-ChristineScaplen

Share

Home Health Foundation names Donna Deveau as Vice President of External Relations and Development

Lawrence, MA – Donna Deveau of Lowell, MA has been named Vice President of External Relations and Development for the Home Health Foundation, one of the largest and most respected home care agencies in Massachusetts comprised of Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.  In this role she will oversee the development and implementation of strategic, agency-wide programs that advance and promote patient care services while influencing governance initiatives impacting the organization’s long term sustainability.   Deveau was promoted from Director of Development and External Relations, where she was instrumental in the planning and implementation of a comprehensive philanthropy, community relations, marketing and communication program, a position she held since 2011.

Prior to joining Home Health Foundation, Ms Deveau held instrumental positions at several distinguished non-profit organizations including Lowell Catholic High School and Lowell General Hospital.   She brings a wealth of strategic planning, operations and management experience to the agency.

“Donna is a highly skilled professional and an exceptional leader,” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation.  “She has demonstrated great skill in the philanthropic and health care community, and places tremendous value on our relationships with patients, healthcare partners and community supporters.”

Home Health Foundation, the leader in home health care, is comprised of affiliate agencies Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.   Together the three agencies serve more than 100 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.

Share

East Coast Camaro Club supports Merrimack Valley Hospice with 34th Annual All Vehicle Show

ECCC All Vehicle Car ShowA few clouds couldn’t keep the car enthusiasts away at the East Coast Camaro Club’s 34th All Vehicle Show on Sunday, August 23rd in Hudson, NH.

More than 165 vehicles were entered into the show, and were viewed by a great crowd of spectators of all ages. Proceeds from entry fees, admission, raffle prizes and concession sales will ensure quality, compassionate, end-of-life care for those in the community as well as bereavement support. The group historically presents its annual gift to Merrimack Valley Hospice as the year ends.

“So many of us have either been helped personally by Merrimack Valley Hospice or know someone who has,” said East Coast Camaro Club President, George Giroux. “Club members, vehicle owners, and regular show visitors all tell us that knowing this event helps support the work of hospice makes it an even better way to spend the day enjoying their love of cars. It’s for a great cause and we’re proud to help!”

For over 15 years, the East Coast Camaro Club has supported the work of Merrimack Valley Hospice and Merrimack Valley Hospice House through their annual All Vehicle Show, raising more than $70,000 to date. Funds raised support the patients and their families in the Merrimack Valley and Southern New Hampshire communities.

Share

A free guide for patients living with heart failure is available through the new Hearts at Home program of Home Health VNA

Lawrence, MA – Home Health VNA is offering a free guide “Caring for Your Heart: Living Well with Heart Failure” available on our website at www.HomeHealthVNA.org/patient-resources or by phone at 978-552-4186. The goal of this guide is to help patients learn about heart failure and what they can do to reduce symptoms and better control their disease. The guide is being offered in conjunction with the new Hearts at Home program of Home Health VNA.

If you have heart failure you are not alone. Heart failure is one of the most common reasons people age 65 and older go to the hospital and the 2nd leading cause of death in both Massachusetts and New Hampshire. Hearts at Home has been specifically designed to provide patients with the nursing care and support they need to control heart failure symptoms so they can feel better and manage well at home.

Hearts at Home includes nursing care and teaching, diet and nutrition counseling, tips on exercise and activities, information on what to do when symptoms increase and educational materials. Patients must meet Medicare and/or health insurance guidelines for home health care in order to be eligible for the program. For more information on the Hearts at Home program call 978-552-4045.

Home Health VNA, the leader in home health care, is a not-for-profit agency affiliated with HomeCare, Inc. and Merrimack Valley Hospice. Together the three agencies serve more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire.

Share

Home Health Foundation recognized by the Friends of Amesbury Council on Aging

Lawrence, MA – Home Health Foundation was recently presented a certificate of appreciation from the Friends of the Amesbury Council of Aging. The award was presented to Meg Hogan, Vice President of External Relations by Council on Aging Director Annmary Connor in recognition of the health education and supportive services the agencies provide to the senior citizens of Amesbury.

“Health education teaches seniors how to live active lives, reduces the risk of some diseases and increases satisfaction with life in general,” said Hogan. “It is the mission of our agencies to provide these services and we are honored to be recognized for our work.”

Home Health Foundation, the leader in home health care, is affiliated with Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. Together the three agencies provide comprehensive home health and hospice care in more than 100 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire.

Share

Mary Immaculate Health/Care Services and Home Health Foundation host Secretary of Health and Human Services Marylou Sudders

Lawrence, MA – On Wednesday, June 24, 2015 Mary Immaculate Health/Care Services and Home Health Foundation co-hosted a professional education program featuring newly appointed Secretary of Health and Human Services Marylou Sudders as keynote speaker. Secretary Sudders leads the largest executive agency in the state government, a $19.4 billion state budget with 22 thousand public servants and oversees critical services in the Commonwealth.

In her remarks Secretary Sudders described her fiscal year 2016 legislative agenda, provided information about initiatives to reduce Mass Health spending without reducing services and information on efforts to ensure essential services for elders in the Commonwealth are maintained.

“I know that elders across the state have 3 important priorities: health, resilience and independence” said Sudders. “We are fortunate that, unlike other states, Massachusetts provides comprehensive health and social services for our elderly. Under the leadership of our new Secretary of Elder Affairs Alice Bonner, elders and people with disabilities will continue to have opportunities to live well and thrive throughout the Commonwealth.”

Home Health Foundation, the leader in home health care, is affiliated with Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. Together the three agencies provide comprehensive home health and hospice care in more than 100 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire.

Mary Immaculate Health/Care Services is a quality provider of healthcare and housing services to older adults to meet the broad life-support needs of elders. The organization includes the nursing center care, short term rehabilitation services, independent and supportive housing, adult day health and assisted living.

Share

2015 Guide to Healthcare at Home Now Available

The heart of caring is where people call home.  Your guide to healthcare at home explains the many resources available to stay healthy and safe at home.

Click below to view the 2015 guide:

2015 Guide to Healthcare at Home

Share

4th Annual Legacy of Leading benefit dinner raises more than $85,000 for Home Health Foundation

Lawrence, Mass. – More than 240 guests gathered  in support of the agencies of Home Health Foundation on Thursday, April 9, 2015 and to honor several leaders in the community at the 4th annual Legacy of Leading.  The event celebrates people who show great support of the health and wellbeing of the Greater Merrimack Valley communities, as well as a commitment to the mission of the agencies of Home Health Foundation.

Home Health Foundation recognized David J. LaFlamme, CEO of North Shore Bank and past board chair of Home Health Foundation, and Clive B. & Suzanne I. Fazioli, Founders of the Fazioli Charitable Foundation at the 2015 Legacy of Leading reception.

Through the generosity of guests, sponsors and community members, Home Health Foundation raised more than $85,000 in support of programs dedicated to assisting the patients and families served by Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.

Sponsors of the event included:

Leader Sponsors: Clive and Suzanne Fazioli Charitable Foundation and North Shore Bank

Benefactor Sponsors: Byram Healthcare, Eastern Bank, Fred C Church Insurance, Pentucket Bank, Pentucket Medical Associates, and TD Bank

Ambassador Sponsors: Anna Jaques Hospital, Enterprise Bank and Trust, Haverhill Bank, Norm LaFlamme, Lawrence General Hospital, and Trinity EMS

Advocate Sponsors: Atlantic Charter Insurance Co., Atwood Memorial Company, Donoghue, Barrett & Singal, D’Youville Life and Wellness Community, Elder Services of the Merrimack Valley, Inc., Greater Lawrence Family Health Center, H.L. Farmer and Sons Funeral Homes, Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union, Kiwanis Club of Haverhill, Lowell Sun Charities, Mary Immaculate Health/Care Services, Merrimack Valley Magazine, Pest-End Exterminators, PrideStar EMS, Red Mill Graphics, and Zampell Facilities Management

Friend Sponsors: Align Credit Union, Beverly Bank, Circle Health, Element Care, Home Care Specialists, Jackson Lumber and Millwork, The Lowell Five Savings Bank, McDougall & Duval Advertising, Newburyport Five Cents Savings Bank, Nichols Village, Northern Essex Community College, The Provident Bank, Renaissance Golf Club, and Barbara Sager

The Home Health Foundation includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.  As 2015 marks our 120th anniversary, our organization continues to deliver the highest quality home health and hospice care for infants, children, adults and elders in both home and community settings.  Our service area includes more than 110 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. For more information, visit www.homehealthfoundation.org

Share

Free guide for patients with serious advancing illness available

Lawrence, MA –  Home Health VNA is pleased to offer a free informational brochure “Know Your Choices, A Guide for Patients with Serious Advancing Illness”.  Produced by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, the guide is an important resource for all individuals and contains information on advance care planning, palliative care, hospice care and medical orders for life sustaining treatment.  To download your free guide about this regulation and to learn about how you can begin the conversation about advanced care planning with your family and loved ones, please go to   http://www.homehealthfoundation.org/patients-resources or call 978-552-4186.

In Massachusetts, a newly implemented regulation requires that all licensed hospitals, clinics, and long-term care facilities distribute information about advanced care planning to adults with serious illness. No one likes to think or talk about illness and future medical care choices, but when faced with a serious illness, it’s critical that your doctor, family and loved ones know your health care preferences.   The goal of this guide is to help all individuals start the conversation and make their wishes clearly known before a serious illness or accident forces the conversation.

Home Health VNA, the leader in home health care, is a not-for-profit agency affiliated with HomeCare, Inc. and Merrimack Valley Hospice.  Together the three agencies serve more than 90 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire.

Share

Merrimack Valley Hospice Receives Eastern Bank Foundation Partnership Grant

Lawrence, MA. – On Monday, December 1, 2014 Merrimack Valley Hospice was awarded a $10,000 Eastern Bank Foundation Partnership Grant in support of the seven suite expansion of the Merrimack Valley Hospice House. The check was presented to John Albert, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation by Maria O’Halloran, Vice President, Financial Institutions and Mary Ann Jordan, Senior Vice President and Director, Financial Institutions at Merrimack Valley Hospice House.

“I am proud and honored to present this check on behalf of Eastern Bank’s Charitable Foundation,” said O’Halloran. “I had the opportunity to personally experience the compassionate support provided to patients while visiting a friend who spent his last weeks at Merrimack Valley Hospice House. It is truly an incredible resource for the community.”

“This gift in support of the expansion of Merrimack Valley Hospice House is a testament to Eastern Bank’s commitment to our community,” said Albert. I would also like to thank Bob Rivers, President and Chief Operating Officer and Shannon Mini, Vice President of Treasury Services for their support of this application which will help to ensure that the Hospice House is available to all patients and families in need.”

Since Merrimack Valley Hospice House opened in June 2009 it has been operating at or near capacity, serving more than 1,800 patients annually. Licensed by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health for a 21 suite facility, the Hospice House was designed for a two-phase construction: the initial 14 suites, then, a final phase of seven suites at a time when occupancy and demand for services exceeded capacity.

The new wing brings a total of 21 private patient suites available to patients, two of which can accommodate pediatric patients. All suites feature skylights, a patio, private bathroom and comfortable space for loved ones who can visit at any time of day or night. The wing will reflect the existing peacefulness of a home setting with family gathering area, a care station and several common areas.

Merrimack Valley Hospice is the leader in hospice care. Together with affiliate organizations Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., the not-for-profit organizations form a unique and comprehensive continuum of the highest quality home health and hospice care for patients and families. For more information, visit www.MerrimackValleyHospice.org.

From left to right:   Mary Ann Jordan,  Senior Vice President and Director, Eastern Bank; Maria O’Halloran, Vice President, Financial Institutions, Eastern Bank; John Albert, President/CEO, Home Health Foundation; Tom Mortimer, President, Haverhill Bank and member of the Compassionate Journey committee of Merrimack Valley Hospice; Meg Hogan, Vice President, External Relations, Home Health Foundation

From left to right:
Mary Ann Jordan, Senior Vice President and Director, Eastern Bank; Maria O’Halloran, Vice President, Financial Institutions, Eastern Bank; John Albert, President/CEO, Home Health Foundation; Tom Mortimer, President, Haverhill Bank and member of the Compassionate Journey committee of Merrimack Valley Hospice; Meg Hogan, Vice President, External Relations, Home Health Foundation.

Share

Hundreds Help Merrimack Valley Hospice Fundraiser Reach Record-setting Success

Lawrence, MA – October 17, 2014 – Three hundred and fifty guests had fun “Along the Boardwalk” at this year’s annual Food, Wine, and Beer Pairing and Silent Auction to benefit Merrimack Valley Hospice. On September 25, the Black Swan Country Club in Georgetown was transformed with games and fun from the classic boardwalks of yesteryear, while guests enjoyed old-time games like skee-ball, the duck-pond, and ring toss; had their fortune’s told; and walked home with more than 100 unique auction packages donated by local businesses and supporters. Raising $125,000 this year, the signature fundraiser benefits patients and their families receiving hospice care and bereavement services in the 110 towns served by Merrimack Valley Hospice in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and York, Maine.

Ensuring the event’s success was Pentucket Bank, the Premier Sponsor. Additional lead support was from the Fazioli Charitable Foundation as Chateau Sponsor.

“This event grows each year in terms of the fun our guests seem to enjoy and the funds that are raised for Merrimack Valley Hospice,” remarked John Albert, President and CEO of Merrimack Valley Hospice and the agencies of Home Health Foundation. “It’s truly an honor to see that the evening brings together so many people who have been touched by our hospice care in some way and understand that the funds raised stay here in the community they live in, work in and care about.”

An ever-popular event, people are already anticipating the theme for the 2015 Food, Wine and Beer Pairing, scheduled for September 24, 2015.

In addition to the Premier Sponsor, Pentucket Bank, and Chateau Sponsor, Fazioli Family Charitable Foundation, this year’s Food, Wine and Beer Pairing received strong support my local sponsors including:

 

Grand Cru Sponsor:

TD Bank

 

Reserve Sponsors:

Byram Healthcare
Coram Specialty Infusion Services
Eastern Bank
Fred C. Church Insurance
Trinity EMS

 

Champagne Sponsors:

Enterprise Bank
Fidelity Investments
Haverhill Bank
H.L. Farmer and Sons Funeral Home,
Holy Family Hospital
Holy Family Hospital at Merrimack Valley
Home Care Specialists
Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union
Lawrence General Hospital
Mary Immaculate Health/Care Services
Merrimack Valley Magazine
Parker Hannifin Corp.
Pest-End Inc.
Rogers Spring Hill Farm
Senior Whole Health
Thinking Phone Networks

 

Sommelier Sponsors:

Align Credit Union, Atlantic Charter Insurance, Haverhill Kiwanis, Kevin B. Comeau Funeral Home, Lowell Five, Pentucket Medical Associates, Pridestar EMS, Red Mill Graphics, Marcia and Dale Rogers, and The Savings Bank.

 

Connoisseur Sponsors:

Anna Jaques Hospital, Arrow Paper, Atwood Memorial, Bioscrip, D’Youville Life and Wellness Community, Mr. Joseph Dolfe, Genesis Healthcare, Greater Lawrence Family Health Center, Jackson Lumber, Nichols Village, North Shore Bank and Penacook Place.

 

dividerdivider

About Merrimack Valley Hospice

Merrimack Valley Hospice has been providing end-of-life care in our community for more than 35 years, and is one of the most respected not-for-profit hospices in the region.

Merrimack Valley Hospice House, a unique and vital component of Merrimack Valley Hospice’s continuum of care since 2009, is an acute care facility providing exceptional palliative and end-of-life care in a comfortable, home-like setting.

Share

Dr. Robert Horowitz to present education program on hospice in cancer care

Horowitz Robert HiResYork, Maine – On Wednesday, October 15, from 12:00 noon until 1:00 p.m. Dr. Robert Horowitz, Medical Director from York Hospital Hospice, will present “Understanding the Value of Hospice in Cancer Care and Treatment.” This presentation, part of the “Lunch and Learn” series of the York Hospital Women’s committee, and funded by a grant from the Maine Community Foundation, will be held at York Public Library at 15 Long Sands Road in York, Maine.

Dr. Horowitz will provide a basic overview of cancer, treatment options and symptom management with hospice care. The presentation is designed to educate the public about the many treatment options that might be available as well as when hospice and comfort care is most appropriate and beneficial to the patient and family. Following his presentation, Dr. Horowitz will take questions from the audience. Lunch will be provided.

The event is free and open to the public but registration is required. To register, please call 207-351-2385 or e-mail info@yorkhospital.com.

York Hospital Hospice, in partnership with Merrimack Valley Hospice, offers comfort care and palliative services for patients nearing the end-of-life. Whether patients are at home, in a hospital or a long-term care or assisted living facility, York Hospital Hospice provides compassionate physical, emotional and spiritual care for patients, and will coordinate grief and bereavement support for families and caregivers. For more information, visit www.yorkhospital.com/hospice.

Share

Healthcare Reform Trends

Home Health VNA and Mary Immaculate Health/Care present:
Healthcare Reform
Trends and Implications 2014 & Beyond

Thursday, October 16, 2014
Mary Immaculate Health/Care Services
189 Maple Street
Lawrence, MA

KH+HEADSHOT+GRFeaturing Keynote Speaker Kathleen Heery, RN, MS, CCM

Healthcare reform forges change not seen in 100 years and affects every professional in the industry. This program reveals the latest changes, updates information on ACOs, explains diminishing government funding, describes six irreversible trends over the next 10 years and defines massive changes taking place in 2014.

If you are unsure about the impact of healthcare reform, its affects on individuals, families, businesses, the costs, who will be paying and why it is so expensive, this program provides the answers.

 

For more information or to register: Healthcare Reform: Trends and Implications 2014 & Beyond

Offering 1.0 Nursing Contact Hours and pending 1.0 Social Work Continuing Education Credits
Home Health Foundation is an approved provider of continuing nursing education by the New Hampshire Nurses’ Association Commission on Continuing Education, an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.

Home Health VNA Affiliated
Share

Theresa, Petrie RN, BSN promoted to Vice President of HomeCare, Inc.

TheresaPetrie_081314_013Lawrence, MA – Theresa Petrie RN, BSN, of Andover, MA has been named Vice President of HomeCare, Inc., an affiliate agency of Home Health VNA and Merrimack Valley Hospice. Petrie joined the agency in 2006 as Elder Health Program Manager and has expanded that role to include the management of the Private Pay division and the development of the Chronic Disease Self-Management Program. In these roles she has been responsible for marketing, program development and operations.

“Theresa is a highly skilled professional who brings exceptional expertise to HomeCare, Inc.” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation. “She has more than a decade of experience and is highly respected by staff and patients alike. We are thrilled that she has joined our senior management team.”

“I am honored to be a part of such a well respected and clinically advanced organization” said Petrie. “I look forward to working with other members of the leadership team to further the mission and vision of the organization.”

Petrie received her BS in Nursing from Salem State College and a BS in Business Administration from the University of New Hampshire.

HomeCare, Inc., the leader in Private Care, is affiliated with Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice. Together the three agencies serve more than 90 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, and Southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the Southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital. For more information, visit our website at www.HomeCareInc.org.

Share

Home Health VNA Recognized for Healthcare in Merrimack Valley

MVCC Award - Karen GomesHome Health VNA received the 2014 Merrimack Valley Chamber of Commerce (MVCC) Business Award in the category of Healthcare. This award recognizes Home Health VNA as a leader in the local healthcare community and celebrates its accomplishments and successes. More than 200 MVCC members attended the annual award ceremony which honored other local businesses in a variety of different categories.

“It is a great honor to be recognized by the Chamber for the critically important home healthcare we provide throughout the Merrimack Valley and beyond,” said Gomes. “Home Health VNA is one of the most respected home healthcare agencies in the region and we are committed to quality services and optimal patient care.”

Home Health VNA is a not-for-profit agency affiliated with HomeCare, Inc. and Merrimack Valley Hospice. For more information call 800-933-5593.

 

 

 

Karen Gomes, RN, MS, CPHQ, Vice President of Home Health VNA, accepts the award at the 2014 MVCC Annual Small Business Recognition Breakfast held on June 13 at DiBurro’s of Ward Hill.

Share

Home Health VNA Maternal Child Health to implement Welcome Family Program

Lawrence, MA – Home Health VNA announced today that it has been selected by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) to implement the innovative Welcome Family Program. Welcome Family offers a one-time nurse home visit to all mothers and newborns in select cities and towns in the Greater Lawrence region of Massachusetts. The visits, conducted by registered nurses from Home Health VNA’s Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Department, will be used to assess the health of the mother and the baby, provide education on infant health, well being, nutrition and parenting, and it will serve as a gateway to a larger system of care and support. The Welcome Family visit is free of charge.

“We are very pleased to have been selected by DPH to implement this important program which is designed to maximize the wellbeing of mothers and their infants in this region” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health VNA. “Our MCH nurses are uniquely skilled and experienced, and are committed to the health and welfare of new mothers and their infants in our care.”

Home Health VNA has one of the largest MCH programs in the state with a team of highly skilled registered nurses who provide complex medical care and support to children aged newborn to 18 in more than 90 cities and town in the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern NH. The team is expert in the care of children and families with complex medical care needs and regularly receives referrals to provide advanced oncology services in the home from The Jimmy Fund Clinic of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston Children’s Hospital, Tufts Medical Center, Mass General Hospital and Dartmouth Hitchcock Hospital.

Home Health VNA, the leader in home health care, is a not-for-profit agency affiliated with HomeCare, Inc. and Merrimack Valley Hospice. For more information on the Welcome Family program and other comprehensive programs and services, call 800-933-5593.
 

Share

Home Health VNA Awards Annual Scholarship to Lawrence Technical School Student

Home Health VNA Annual Scholarship AwardHome Health VNA has awarded Desiree Merced Gonzalez, a graduate from the Health Careers program at Greater Lawrence Technical School, their scholarship given annually in memory of a former employee.

The $500 scholarship was established in 1995 as a tribute to Lisa Santiago Ventura, an employee of the home care agency, who was killed during a high speed police chase. Ms. Ventura was an innocent bystander whose vehicle was fatally struck during the chase. In her memory, the agency gives the Lisa Santiago Ventura Memorial Scholarship to a graduating senior of the Greater Lawrence Technical School where she was a student.

“We are happy to be presenting this scholarship to a student like Ms. Merced Gonzalez who is pursuing her education in health care,” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President / CEO of Home Health VNA, and its affiliate agencies Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. “We are greatly impressed with the dedication Ms. Merced Gonzalez has shown to her studies and we wish her the best as she continues her work in the health care field.”

Desiree Merced Gonzalez has been accepted to the nursing program at Middlesex Community College in Lowell, MA. Desiree is a resident of Lawrence and is currently working as a CNA at Edgewood Retirement Community.

Linda Cote, lead teacher in Health Careers at the Greater Lawrence Technical School, commends the work of Ms. Merced Gonzalez. “She is an all around great student and is an excellent representation of the Greater Lawrence Technical School.”

 

Share

Extra! Extra!

Local newspapers featured the special insert: Your Guide to Home Health and Hospice Care. Did you miss it on May 8? Click here for an electronic version or call 978-552-4186 to request one by mail.
 

Share

Home Health Foundation welcomes Donna Beaudin, VP of Quality/Compliance & Risk Management

Donna C. Beaudin, OTR/L, CBIST, NHA, CHC, of Salem, NH has been named Vice President of Quality, Compliance and Risk Management for the Home Health Foundation, which includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. Beaudin brings a wealth of progressive executive management, strategic planning and leadership experience to the agencies. Most recently she worked as Corporate Compliance Officer, Director of Quality, Risk Management and Regulatory Compliance at Northeast Rehabilitation Hospital in Salem, NH, where she was responsible for corporate compliance, regulatory analysis, performance improvement and risk management for that facility.

“Donna is a highly skilled professional who brings exceptional expertise to our agencies” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation. “She has more than a decade of experience in the complex regulatory and compliance environment and a firm grasp of the issues in both home health and hospital environments. We are thrilled that she has joined our senior management team.”

“I am honored to be a part of such a well respected and clinically advanced organization” said Beaudin. “I look forward to working with other members of the leadership team to further the mission and vision of the organization.”

Beaudin received her Bachelor’s Degree from Tufts University – Boston School of Occupational Therapy. She is currently a MBA candidate in Health Care Administration from New England College.

Share

Merrimack Valley Hospice welcomes Robert Abel, BNS, RN, CHPN, CCM, CMC as Director

BobAbel seated headshotRobert “Bob” Abel of Medford, has been named Director of Merrimack Valley Hospice, the leader in hospice care in the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, Southern New Hampshire and York, Maine.  Bob will oversee the clinical management of hospice operations in the community and at Merrimack Valley Hospice House. 

Bob began his nursing career at the forefront of the hospice movement and has spent the past 30 years focused on hospice and home health care. He worked with Elizabeth Kubler-Ross, a pioneer in the hospice movement and author of the groundbreaking book “Death and Dying”. He is passionate about the incredible impact that end of life care has on patients and their families.

“Bob has dedicated his career to quality end-of-life care and brings a wealth of experience to Merrimack Valley Hospice” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation which includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.  “He has developed and implemented innovative programs in hospice and palliative care and is committed to quality services and optimal patient care.”

Bob received his Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Massachusetts at Boston.  He was most recently at Hallmark Visiting Nurse Association and Hospice where he served as Clinical Director for VNA & Hospice, and Hospice & Specialty Services. Prior to Hallmark, he was focused on Hospice and Dementia care as a Program Team Leader, and as a Hospice Nurse Case Manager at the Visiting Nurse Association of Cape Cod.   

Share

Home Health VNA Maternal Child Health Nurses receive Chemotherapy and Biotherapy Certification

Home Health VNA announced today that seven registered nurses in the Maternal and Child Health (MCH) program have received certification in Pediatric Chemotherapy and Biotherapy administered by the Association of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Nurses.  Only a fraction, less than 1%, of the approximately 2.9 million nurses in the United States have completed this certification. Having a team of nurses with this advanced specialty will ensure that children and adolescents with cancer can receive chemotherapy and biotherapy in their own home, reducing the need for time consuming, disruptive and costly trips to the hospital for cancer treatment. 

“With this advanced certification our nurses embrace the concept of family-centered care” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health VNA.  “It will ensure that incredible care is provided to some of our most vulnerable patients in the comfort and security of their own home.”

Home Health VNA has one of the largest MCH programs in the state with a team of highly skilled registered nurses who provide complex medical care and support to children aged newborn to 18 in more than 90 cities and town in the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern NH.  The team is expert in the care of children and families with complex medical care needs and regularly receives referrals to provide advanced oncology services in the home from The Jimmy Fund Clinic of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston Children’s Hospital, Tufts Medical Center, Mass General Hospital and Dartmouth Hitchcock Hospital.

Home Health VNA, the leader in home health care, is a not-for-profit agency affiliated with HomeCare, Inc. and Merrimack Valley Hospice.  For more information on the MCH program and other comprehensive programs and services, visit their website www.HomeHealthVNA.org or call 800-933-5593.

Photo sitting L-R

Shannon Cole, RN, York Maine, Stacey Geary, RN, Lowell, Sharon Tetreault, Hampton, NH

Standing L-R

Kathy Olson, RN, Chelmsford,  Randi Fuller, RN, Amesbury, Carol Sanborn, RN,  Dracut, Meghan Murphy-Flood RN, Andover

Share

JoAnne Nowak, MD Earns Fellow Status

JoAnne Nowak, MD, Medical Director for Merrimack Valley Hospice, recently earned the designation Fellow of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (AAHPM). The Academy is the professional organization for physicians who care for patients with serious illness.  Advancement to Fellowship status within the academy honors dedication to and scholarship in the field of the hospice and palliative medicine. This distinction represents a minimum of 5 years of membership, participation in AAHPM activities, letters of recommendation, and board certification in hospice and palliative medicine.  Dr. Nowak will receive official designation during the AAHPM annual assembly in San Diego, California in March 2014.

“Dr. Nowak’s achievement of Fellow status demonstrates her commitment to our patients and is reflective of her medical expertise, teaching experience and compassionate approach to quality end-of-life care” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President / CEO of Home Health Foundation, the parent organization for Merrimack Valley Hospice, Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc.  We are all very proud of her significant advancement in her specialty of hospice and palliative care.”

“It is such an honor to advance to the status of Fellow and to be recognized by this prestigious organization,” said Dr. Nowak.   “As the leader in the field, the AAHPM is committed to strengthening the specialty of hospice and palliative medicine.  I look forward to working with the Academy to further their mission of quality hospice and palliative care for patients and families.”

Dr. Nowak earned her medical degree from Boston University and completed her residency in Internal Medicine at Boston Veterans Administration Hospital.  She completed a fellowship in Palliative Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Nowak serves as a member of the Massachusetts Medical Society, American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Care, and the Hospice and Palliative Care Federation of Massachusetts.  She lectures both locally and nationally about end-of-life issues.

AAHPM membership includes more than 4,900 physicians and other healthcare professionals. Since 1988, AAHPM has supported hospice and palliative medicine through advancement of clinical practice standards, fostering research, providing education, and through public policy advocacy.

Share

Gift Made in Honor of Edmund J. Cote

John, Ed, Scott, CharlesFor more than 30 years, Edmund J. Cote, immediate past President of the George C. Wadleigh Foundation, has provided guidance and diligent stewardship to the Foundation, investing the assets and distributing grant funds to not-for-profit organizations in greater Haverhill communities.   On Friday, October 18, Cote was honored for those efforts with a plaque unveiled in his honor at Merrimack Valley Hospice House in Haverhill.

The George C. Wadleigh Foundation has been a loyal supporter of Merrimack Valley Hospice House.  In 2008, the Foundation provided leadership support for initial construction of the House, for which a family gathering area was named.  Recently the Foundation provided another leadership gift to the Compassionate Journey capital campaign expansion which allowed for an additional naming recognition.  The Board of Trustees of the Foundation unanimously voted to name a garden area in honor of Cote as visible and permanent recognition of his efforts.  

“Grant support from the George C. Wadleigh Foundation, under the management of Edmund Cote, has strengthened our agencies, fueling our ability to provide state-of-the-art home and community based services in our communities,” said John G. Albert, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation, which includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.  “Nowhere is that support more visible than here at Merrimack Valley Hospice House.  As an early supporter of the Hospice House initial construction and then again for the new wing expansion, the Foundation has demonstrated a lasting commitment to patients and families during what can be a critical time on life’s journey”

“Edmund Cote has worked tirelessly to steward the George C. Wadleigh Foundation,” said Charles Traver, current President of the Foundation.  “With support and assistance from the Board of Trustees, the Foundation has grown and thrived.  Now, at more than 12 million dollars, the Foundation is able to award grants to a wide variety of not-for- profit agencies that provide essential services to the elderly and indigent in greater Haverhill.  We are very pleased that our support of Merrimack Valley Hospice House will benefit patients and families for decades to come.”

“This is indeed a very special honor,” said Cote, surprised by the plaque and reception which included current and past board members of the Foundation.  “The Merrimack Valley Hospice House is indeed a very special place.  It is gratifying to see how grant support from the Foundation translates into vital care for our community.”

Merrimack Valley Hospice House was completed in June 2009 and contained 14 private suites, as well as a common areas including a kitchen and dining area, living rooms, sanctuary, spa, libraries, chapel and beautiful walkways and gardens.  In 2013, due to unprecedented demand for care, the House was expanded to include an additional 7 suites.  The Merrimack Valley Hospice House specializes in the end of life care, and provides for all the needs of patients and their families. From state-of-the-art pain management, to providing for each person’s spiritual needs, the goal is to insure that everyone served in the House receives the services and support needed to be as comfortable as possible.

Share

Home Health VNA Staff Recognition

Home Health VNA recognizes one or more clinicians who are using best practices, advanced skills, caring and compassion to help our patients meet goals that are meaningful to them. Home Health Foundation offers congratulations to the following:

July’s award goes to Stacey Geary, MCH nurse, who has taken on the herculean task of providing exceptional nursing care to a very ill young child with cancer. This circumstance in itself is usually enough to make for a very challenging case, but this particular child is a recently arrived refugee from Malaysia, and the entire family has benefited so much from Stacey’s knowledge, experience and compassion.

August saw multiple winners, all of whom use patient-centeredness as a guiding principle of care. The Behavioral Health Team of Kim Arsenault, RN; Trish Garrison, LICSW; and Amy Lyons, PT worked together and made a big difference in the life of a severely depressed and anxious patient. Kristen Desrosiers, RN in the Lowell office took on a very challenging patient with complex and technical nursing needs who also needed a tender approach and a lot of TLC.

Share

Merrimack Valley Hospice welcomes Andrea LeBlanc as Vice President

Andrea Leblanc retouchedAndrea LeBlanc, RN, BSN, of Gorham, Maine has been named Vice President of Merrimack Valley Hospice, the leader in hospice care in the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, Southern New Hampshire and Southern Maine.  LeBlanc brings a wealth of progressive leadership experience including clinical and administrative roles in home health and hospice, and at the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services in Portland Maine.  Most recently she worked as Chief Operating Officer of Androscoggin Home Care and Hospice in Lewiston, Maine, where she was responsible for operations, quality improvement, financial performance and other program and technology initiatives.

“Andrea is a true leader and role model who brings exceptional expertise to Merrimack Valley Hospice” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation which includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.  “She has developed and implemented innovative programs to improve clinical quality that exceeded national benchmarks, developed and implemented a palliative care program, and restructured operations to improve collaboration and financial performance.  More importantly, she has a firm grasp of critical industry issues and initiatives.”

“I am passionate about hospice care and proud to be a part of such a well respected and clinically advanced organization” said LeBlanc.  “I look forward to working with other members of the leadership team to further the mission of the organization.”

LeBlanc received her Bachelor of Science in nursing degree from Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia.  She is currently a MBA candidate in Health Care from New England College.

Share

Home Health VNA Staff Recognition

Each month Home Health VNA recognizes one or more clinicians who are using best practices, advanced skills, caring and compassion to help our patients meet goals that are meaningful to them.

Home Health Foundation offers congratulations of the following who have been recognized over the past year:
Nancy Hosford, PTA; Sharon Tetreault, RN; Lisa Tapley, RN; Robbin Smith, MSW; Carol Backman, RN; Jackie Behenna, PT; Michelle Alessi, RN; Linda Harder, LPN; Shila Hill, RN CDE; Karen DiPietro, DE; Kristen Pride; Lisa Marquis; Martha Doherty, OTR; Cheryl Northam, RN; Dexter Swasey, OT; Andrea Carlson, PT and Christa Livingstone, MSW.

Share

Visiting Nurse Association of America Volunteer of the Year

Ila Cox of Boxford MA, long time Board of Trustee member of the Home Health Foundation, has been named as the Visiting Nurse Association of America (VNAA) Volunteer of the Year under the category of Agency Board Member. The award honors her for leadership, determination and significant contributions to a home health agency. Home care organizations from across the United States nominated their board members for this award. Cox was selected from that group of candidates.

“Ila has many professional accomplishments and has been recognized as an innovator and leader who, through honesty and hard work, has helped this organization tackle tough problems and succeed,” said John Albert, President and CEO of the Home Health Foundation, which includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice, and HomeCare, Inc. “In addition, she serves as a role model and mentor, not only because of her business and academic accomplishments but through the example she sets for other board members and employees every day. Her management style inspires, motivates and mobilizes others to take action. She encourages great ideas and employee participation. ”

Cox received her award in April at the VNAA Annual Meeting in Florida.

Share

Merrimack Valley Hospice Announces Capital Campaign Major Grant

Cummings PictureMerrimack Valley Hospice announced today that the Merrimack Valley Hospice House expansion project has been awarded a $100,000 grant from One World Boston, a Cummings Foundation affiliate.  This award, which was championed by Cummings Properties employee Margie Duggan of Haverhill, and announced in the early decision round of grants awarded, is considered a challenge grant.  It is designed to encourage other foundation giving in that Merrimack Valley Hospice must match this gift from other local and regional foundations and/or corporations in order to receive the full amount awarded.

“We are thrilled to receive this very generous grant award and grateful to Margie Duggan for her support of the Merrimack Valley Hospice House” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Merrimack Valley Hospice.  “We are confident that other local and regional foundations will also understand the need for this expansion and support this project.”

“Because Cummings Foundation’s philanthropy is made possible, in part, through the hard work of Cummings Properties’ staff, we are delighted to support local nonprofits that are meaningful to dedicated colleagues like Margie,” said Joel Swets, Executive Director of Cumming Foundation.  “The Foundation applauds the important work being done by Merrimack Valley Hospice House and is pleased to help fund its expansion.”

The addition of the new wing expansion at the Hospice House will complete their Department of Public Health license for 21 private patient suites in total, of which two may accommodate pediatric patients.  All suites feature skylights, a private bathroom and seating and space for loved ones to visit at any time of day or night.   The wing will reflect the existing peacefulness of a home setting with patios, family gathering area, a care station and several common areas.

Share

Pentucket Bank makes lead gift – Merrimack Valley Hospice House Expansion

Pentucket Bank has been a long time supporter of Merrimack Valley Hospice and the patients and families served by the agency. Recently, the bank made a $50,000 lead gift in support of the 7 suite expansion of the Merrimack Valley Hospice House.

“This lead gift in support of the Hospice House expansion is a testament to Pentucket Bank’s commitment to our community,” said John G. Albert, President of the Home Health Foundation which includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.  “The bank is one of the first organizations to support the campaign to expand Merrimack Valley Hospice House. By making a lead gift they are helping us leverage other financial support to ensure the Hospice House is available to all patients in need.”

“Pentucket Bank is honored to provide support to an organization that fills a key void in the healthcare system in our region,” said Scott Cote, President of Pentucket Bank.  “The Board of Trustees and I know firsthand that Merrimack Valley Hospice House is a special place, and an invaluable resource to our community.”

Since Merrimack Valley Hospice House opened in June 2009 it has been operating at or near capacity, serving more than 1,500 patients.  Licensed by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health for a 21 suite facility, the Hospice House was designed for a two-phase construction:  the initial 14 suites, then, a final phase of 7 suites at a time when occupancy and demand for services exceeded capacity.  No one anticipated that time would come so quickly.

The addition of the new wing will allow for 21 private patient suites in total, of which 2 can accommodate pediatric patients.  All suites feature skylights, a private bathroom and seating and space for loved ones to visit at any time of day or night. The wing will reflect the existing peacefulness of a home setting with patios, family gathering area, a care station and several common areas.

Merrimack Valley Hospice is the leader in hospice care. Together with affiliate organizations Home Health VNA and HomeCare, Inc., the not-for-profit organizations form a unique and comprehensive continuum of the highest quality home health and hospice care for patients and families.

Share

Nominations Open for Schwartz Center Compassionate Caregiver Award®

Nominations are open for the 15th annual Schwartz Center Compassionate Caregiver Award. This prestigious award honors caregivers in the New England region (CT, ME, MA, NH, RI, VT) who display extraordinary compassion in caring for patients. The recipient will receive $5,000 and four finalists will receive $1,000 each. Nominations are due May 3, 2013.
 
The SchwartzCenter for Compassionate Healthcare will present the award at its annual Kenneth B. Schwartz Center Compassionate Healthcare Dinner on November 21, 2013 at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center in South Boston, MA.
 
For more information visit www.theschwartzcenter.org or call 617-724-4746.

Share

Merrimack Valley Hospice Announces Capital Campaign Leadership

Cote, Scott Photo

Merrimack Valley Hospice announced today that Merrimack Valley Hospice House expansion project is well underway and that two co-chairs have been selected to lead the fundraising campaign.  Scott Cote, President of Pentucket Bank and Mary Jane Werner, Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees have agreed to lead the two million dollar fundraising campaign to expand Merrimack Valley Hospice House by seven additional suites.

“We are very pleased to have such dynamic leadership for this critical expansion project” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Merrimack Valley Hospice. “Their commitment to this project, and understanding of the value this expansion brings to patients and families, will assure its success.”

Since Merrimack Valley Hospice House opened in June 2009 it has been operating at or near capacity, serving more than 1,500 patients. Licensed by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health for a 21 suite facility, the Hospice House was designed for a two-phase construction: the initial 14 suites, then, a final phase of seven suites at a time when occupancy and demand for services exceeded capacity.  No one anticipated that time would come so quickly.

The addition of the new wing will allow for 21 private patient suites in total, of which two may accommodate pediatric patients.  All suites feature skylights, a private bathroom, seating and space for loved ones to visit at any time of day or night. The wing will reflect the existing peacefulness of a home setting with patios, family gathering area, a care station and several common areas.

Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice, and HomeCare, Inc. are the leaders in home health and hospice care.  Together, the not-for-profit organizations form a unique and comprehensive continuum of the highest quality home health and hospice care for patients and families. For more information click here.

Share

Home Health VNA welcomes Karen Gomes as Vice President

Karen E. Gomes, RN, of Beverly, Massachusetts, has been named Vice President of Home Health VNA, the leader in home health care services in the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire.  Gomes brings a breadth of progressive leadership experience including clinical and administrative roles in skilled nursing facilities and home health and hospice agencies.  Most recently she worked as Executive Director of Home Health Services at Northeast Senior Health where she was responsible for the start-up, growth and development of that Medicare-certified home health care agency.

“Karen is a true leader who brings a wealth of experience to Home Health VNA” said John G. Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health Foundation which includes Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc.  “She has developed and implemented innovative programs in chronic disease management and telehealth, participated in transitions of care and quality improvement programs and has a firm grasp of industry issues and initiatives.”

“I am passionate about home health care and thrilled to be a part of such a well respected and clinically advanced organization” said Gomes.  “I look forward to working with other members of the leadership team to further the mission of the organization.”

Gomes received her Bachelor of Science degree from Regents College.  She is currently a candidate for Master of Science in Gerontology.

 

 

Share

Home Health VNA Rated in the Top 25% of Home Health Agencies Nationally

Lawrence, Mass. – Home Health VNA, the leader in home health care, announced today that once again, the agency has been named among the top 25% of the “Home Care Elite”, a listing of the top tier of home health care agencies in the United States.

John G. Albert, President and CEO credits Home Health VNA’s highly skilled professionals and their dedication to the high standards of quality care with the company’s ability to rank as one of the Home Care Elite. “Our staff is committed to providing the highest standards of care to our patients every day. Being named among the best agencies in the country recognizes that commitment.” said Albert. “Patients and families have a choice in home health care agencies. Being recognized in the top 25% of home care agencies across the country means that when you choose Home Health VNA you are assured the most advanced care available”.

To score home healthcare agencies, the OSC used publicly available data from the last half of 2010 and the first half of 2011. All agencies were rated on quality of care measurements in the Home Health Compare report, and quality improvement and financial performance from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) Cost Reports. Each agency’s performance in these three areas was compared against the performance of other organizations in their state and in the country.

“Home Health VNA is honored to be recognized again this year for our patient care achievements. We are unwavering in our commitment to provide superior home health care and to assure that our patients and families have the best possible outcomes. Our employees demonstrate skillful care and compassion every day and it is very rewarding to have their efforts recognized”, stated Gail DeLaney-Woolford, Vice President of Clinical Services.

 

 

Share

Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. Receive Accreditation from Joint Commission.

John Albert, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc., announced today that the agencies have been awarded accreditation with full standards compliance from the Joint Commission.

“This award follows a rigorous four-day unannounced evaluation of our agencies programs, policies, procedures and patient care quality” said Albert. “Joint Commission accreditation affirms our commitment to excellence in patient care. I cannot be more proud of all of our staff from across the organization. They demonstrate their skill and commitment to patients and families in the communities we serve every day.”

The Joint Commission, formed in 1951, is dedicated to improving the quality of the nation’s health care through a voluntary accreditation and is responsible for accrediting and certifying more than 19,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States. All Home Health organizations are subject to a three- year accreditation cycle.

In 2010 Home Health VNA was named among the top 25% of the “Home Care Elite”, a listing of the top tier of home health care agencies in the United States. Later that year the agency was named a Pinnacle Award finalist for superior patient satisfaction from the Visiting Nurse Association of New England. Home Health VNA, Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc., the leaders in home health and hospice care, provide a full continuum of home health, hospice and community based services in 90 cities and towns in the Merrimack Valley, Northeastern Massachusetts, Southern New Hampshire and the seacoast.

Share