For Health Care Professionals

Media Highlights

As a pioneer in community-based healthcare and a partner with leading providers in innovative models of care, VNSNY is proud of the impact we have had on the communities we serve. Here is a sampling of recent coverage in the news.

Supporting Home Health Aides in Their Vital Work Assisting America’s Seniors

From: The Huffington Post  

VNSNY’s EVP and Chief of Provider Operations, Marki Flannery, discusses the invaluable role that home health aides (HHAs) play, particularly in caring for the elderly and infirm. Supporting HHAs in their essential – and challenging – job so that they can deliver consistently high-quality care to patients and clients is one of VNSNY’s top priorities. Specifically, VNSNY’s private care affiliate, Partners in Care, provides comprehensive skills training, up-to-date technology and administrative support, schedules to optimize earning potential, and opportunities for career advancement. Read more.

Caring for LGBTQ Older Adults with Dignity and Respect

From: The Huffington Post  

It is estimated that there are more than 3 million lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans age 55+, with that number expected to double in the next 20 years. Susan Northover, SVP of Intake and Patient Care Services at VNSNY, highlights the key ways in which VNSNY is working to ensure inclusive, respectful, and culturally sensitive care for LGBTQ older adults. This includes recent recognition from SAGE at the highest credentialing level (Platinum), and completion of SAGECare training in cultural issues, sensitivities, and best practices. Read more.

Inspiring a Ray of HOPE

From: BronxNet TV

BronxNet TV features VNSNY’s Hospice Outreach program, Project HOPE, in an interview with program director, Michelle Drayton, and VNSNY Faith-based Leader, Jo-An Owings. Michelle and Jo-An highlight the importance of raising awareness about hospice and palliative care, particularly in communities that utilize hospice the least, and speak to VNSNY’s recent initiatives to help educate the community about what hospice is, the benefits it provides, and how to address common misconceptions. Watch the video.

From the Front Lines of Hospice Care: “Embrace It with Compassion and Warmth

From: The Huffington Post

Rosemary Baughn, SVP of VNSNY Hospice and Palliative Care, shares the inspirational experiences and career path of Claudia Paul, Hospice Nurse and team manager at VNSNY’s Shirley Goodman and Himan Brown Residence. Learn about the expert and compassionate care Claudia brings to those at the end of life, as well as how she and VNSNY are working to increase access to hospice care within minority communities, where the benefits of end-of-life care are often misunderstood and underused. Read more.

Value-Based Care: A Health Care Concept Both Political Parties Agree On

From: The Huffington Post

VNSNY’s EVP and Chief of Provider Operations, Marki Flannery, discusses how value-based care has been embraced by both major political parties in their policies, as it‘s been shown to be the most effective approach for slowing the rise in health care expenditures while also improving patients’ outcomes and overall healthcare experience. These benefits are why value-based care will be an essential part of any future health care plan, and why a growing proportion of care provided by VNSNY involves value-based models. Read more.

How to Control Costs with CMS’s Knee Replacement Bundles


As a result of CMS’s bundled payment initiatives, hospitals and providers have an increased focus on reducing the cost of care delivery for knee replacement patients. Charles Cornell, orthopedic surgeon at the Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS), describes two of the biggest opportunities for HSS as part of these cost bundling initiatives—preoperative preparation and discharge of patients directly to home for physical therapy, instead of skilled nursing facilities. HSS has taken advantage of working with VNSNY to provide in-home physical therapy for its patients following discharge. The collaboration has been very successful, resulting in readmission rates for knee replacement patients under 2%. Read more.

Al Roker’s Road to Recovery After Knee Surgery Leads Him Back to TODAY 


NBC’s TODAY Show features VNSNY Physical Therapist Billy Campbell, who has been helping Al Roker with his recovery after knee replacement surgery. Through a series of exercises, Billy is helping Al regain his strength, balance, and agility, enabling him to quickly transition to an outpatient setting to continue his recovery and return to work less than two weeks after his surgery. Watch the video.

America’s Home Care Agencies: Leading the Way in Promoting Public Health

From: The Huffington Post

VNSNY’s EVP and Chief of Provider Operations, Marki Flannery, highlights how home care agencies like VNSNY, play an essential role in advancing public health issues like vaccinations, safe home environments, healthy lifestyle choices, and community support networks. Read more.

Listening at Life’s End: “Nothing to Say, Everything to Be”

From: The Huffington Post

Rosemary Baughn, SVP of VNSNY Hospice and Palliative Care, highlights the vital role volunteers play in caring for hospice patients, providing companionship, support, and relief for patients and family members. VNSNY provides intensive training and support to hospice volunteers, focusing on an approach of active listening and meeting patients wherever they are. Read more.

Letters Of Gratitude Help Bring Thanksgiving Home

From: The Huffington Post

Susan Northover, SVP of Intake and Patient Care Services at VNSNY, shares some letters of thanks expressed by families who receive care from VNSNY, and the gratitude that comes with being able to provide such meaningful care. Read more.

A Touch Can Be Worth a Thousand Words

From: The Huffington Post

Touch is an especially powerful tool of nonverbal communication, and when someone is ill, the power of touch can be amplified. In this article, Susan Northover, VNSNY’s SVP of Intake and Patient Care Services, and VNSNY clinicians share how touch, along with verbal communication, eye contact, and active listening, can be used as an essential tool to advance both the physical and emotional healing of patients. Read more.

The New Health Care Partnership: How America’s Hospitals, Home Care Agencies And Community Physicians Are Working Together To Improve Outcomes And Reduce Costs

From: The Huffington Post

Marki Flannery highlights examples of new partnership models between acute-care hospitals, community physicians, and home health care organizations like VNSNY. Learn about VNSNY’s innovative partnerships, including collaborations designed to help avoid hospital admissions, help patients transition home from the hospital sooner, or help to manage chronic physical and mental illnesses. Read more.

Getting to Yes: Overcoming the Barriers to Hospice Care

From: The Huffington Post

In this article, Rosemary Baughn, SVP of VNSNY Hospice and Palliative Care, highlights several initiatives underway to reach populations that have historically under-utilized hospice care, using education, collaboration, and better access to replace old myths, fears, and barriers. These efforts include Project HOPE, which works with community residents and care providers in Harlem, and the hospice program for veterans, which was recently awarded a We Honor Veterans Level Four Partner designation. Read more.

How Expanded Roles for Home Health Aides Can Improve the Health of Older Americans

From: The Huffington Post

Expanding the skill sets of home health aides (HHAs) is one of the key components to helping the growing population of older Americans age in place successfully. In this article, Marki Flannery, VNSNY’s EVP and Chief of Provider Operations, cites findings from a recent study which showed that home care clients who were cared for by HHAs with advanced training had 24% fewer visits to the ER. Read more.

Healthy Mind, Healthy Body: Changing Health Care, Especially at Home

From: The Huffington Post

VNSNY Behavioral Health nurse, Suzette Santos, shares how the use of VNSNY’s new model of care for behavioral health, which empowers clinicians to take a proactive approach, helped her to improve her patient’s physical and mental health conditions. This story is indicative of how healthcare organizations, including VNSNY, are moving toward an integrated view of physical and behavioral health, with early screening and treatment of mental health disorders. Read more.

Help for Emotional Healing When Life Come to a Close

From The Huffington Post

A life-limiting illness brings stresses that may lead to misunderstandings, tense relationships, or anxiety. In this article, Rosemary Baughn, Senior Vice President of VNSNY Hospice and Palliative Care, shares how, with skill and compassion, VNSNY Hospice counselors and clinicians help foster healing communications between patients and their loved ones. Read more.

New Training Programs for Home Care Providers Are Key to Helping LGBT Seniors Age in Place Securely and with Pride

From The Huffington Post

In this article, Marki Flannery, VNSNY’s EVP and Chief of Provider Operations, highlights the importance of specialized training for home health care workers to ensure knowledge, skill, and sensitivity when caring for LGBT patients. Read more.

Hospice Nurses Teach Us to Honor Life by Honoring Death—and Listening

From The Huffington Post

Hospice workers have specialized knowledge and expertise in caring for people at the end of life. In this article, Rosemary Baughn, Senior Vice President of VNSNY Hospice and Palliative Care, highlights the balance of leading and listening in difficult times, which is essential to hospice care. VNSNY Hospice nurses Denise Smith and Luis Leighton share their experiences with helping to honor life by honoring death. Read more.

Five Things You Did Not Know About Nurses

From WNBC News 4 New York

National Nurses Week is May 6–May 12, a week dedicated to recognizing the men and women of the nursing profession and their tireless commitment to their patients’ well-being. In recognition of National Nurses Week, WNBC News 4 speaks with Neely Bagley, VNSNY RN, who shares five points people may not know about nurses. Watch the video.

National Nurses Week Honors Caregivers

From The Queens Chronicle 

Nurses across the country work tirelessly to ensure that each patient receives safe, quality care. This article highlights the important role nurses serve in the care of their patients, and features Luis Leighton, VNSNY Hospice nurse, who shares his rewarding experience as a visiting nurse. Read more.

Staying the Course for Hope and Humanity in Health Care

From The Huffington Post

Susan Northover, VNSNY’s SVP of Intake and Patient Care Services, speaks about how charitable support made possible by VNSNY’s generous donors helps VNSNY provide hope and humanity, as well as expert medical care, for the area’s underserved and vulnerable populations. Read more.

Observing the Wish to Die at Home

From The Huffington Post

An increasing number of Americans state their preference is to spend their final moments at home rather than in a hospital.  However, honoring a loved one’s end-of-life plans can be challenging. This article highlights how the VNSNY Hospice team works closely with patients and their loved ones to understand end-of-life goals and help achieve them. VNSNY’s Luis Leighton, Hospice RN, and Joel Karlin, Social Worker, share their experiences with families who, when in distress, have struggled to honor their loved one’s request to die home. Read more.

NY1 News: Effort Aims to Reverse Hospice Care Misconceptions

From NY1 News

More Americans are choosing hospice care as part of their end-of-life plans, but growth is slower among minority populations, who often aren’t aware it is an option. This NY1 News segment speaks to the need for continued hospice education within minority communities and helps address common misconceptions. The story features a VNSNY hospice patient and describes how receiving hospice care at his home in Harlem has positively impacted him and his family. VNSNY’s Michelle Drayton, Director of Community Engagement, also shares valuable insights. Watch the video.

Patients Who Spend Final Days At Home Live Longer, Better Quality of Lives

From CBS Newspath

A new study published in the journal CANCER indicates that terminally ill cancer patients who choose to die at home tend to live longer and enjoy a better quality of life than those who die in a hospital. In light of this research, CBS Newspath turned to the expertise and experience of VNSNY Hospice and Palliative Care to share the story of a patient who has benefited from the care that hospice at home provides. Read more.

Cutting-Edge Research Leads to More Targeted and Effective Home Health Care

From The Huffington Post

The VNSNY Center for Home Care Policy and Research is devoted to the study of issues related to delivering high quality, cost-effective health services at home. Several studies are underway to understand how to optimize the effectiveness of home care for patients at high risk for rehospitalization, including those with CHF and recurrent stroke, along with research examining the impact of more personalized home care on outcomes. Read more.

Veteran Determined to Fight Cancer with Help from We Honor Veterans Program

From New York Daily News

This touching article shares the story of a 48-year-old veteran of the first Gulf War and Afghanistan who is dying of cancer. Surrounded by his wife and young children, the patient is able to live his final months with dignity and grace, bolstered by the physical and emotional support provided by his VNSNY Hospice team. Read more.

Gratitude for Dr. Oliver Sacks’ Insights at the End of Life

From The Huffington Post

In his book,Gratitude, neurologist and writer Dr. Oliver Sacks provides profound insights from his experiences during the final months of his life. VNSNY’s Rosemary Baughn speaks with Dr. Sacks’ longtime friend and editor about his final days at home, supported by friends, family, and VNSNY Hospice and Palliative Care. Read more.

Improving Care for Those Who Need It Most

From The Commonwealth Fund

Researchers looking to improve healthcare in the US are focusing on high-need, high-cost patients—both because they need the most help and because they have the biggest impact on national health spending. As new approaches to improving care for high-need, high-cost patients are tested, researchers are learning more about what works and what doesn’t. Read more.

Increasing Hospice Use Among Hispanics and Latinos

From The Huffington Post

Hospice’s palliative care model is increasingly recognized for bringing quality of life to end of life, yet Hispanics in America typically underuse it. Amid national efforts to broaden outreach and access among Hispanics and Latinos, a team from VNSNY Hospice and Palliative Care recently explored key cultural reasons why people may avoid hospice, and discussed solutions for how long to bridge the gap. Read more.

WABC-TV Here and Now: Hospice Care

From WABC-TV Here and Now

On October 18, WABC-TV’s Here and Now show featured VNSNY’s Rosemary Baughn, Senior Vice President of Hospice and Palliative Care, and VNSNY’s Amealya Blake, RN, in a segment about hospice care in the African-American community, including Project HOPE, VNSNY’s Hospice Outreach Patient and Provider Education program. Watch the video.

Project HOPE: Overcoming Demographic Barriers to Hospice Care

From The Huffington Post

Nationwide, African Americans and Hispanics account for just 8.5% and 6% of the US hospice population, respectively. There are a number of reasons for this disparity, but the overriding one is a lack of awareness. To help address these barriers, VNSNY has developed a pilot program in the Harlem section of Manhattan called the HOPE project. Read more.

How Conversations About End of Life—and Policy—Are Changing

From The Huffington Post

Recently, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed that Medicare begin paying doctors to have end-of-life care conversations with their patients. HuffPost Live speaks with experts, including Rosemary Baughn, Senior Vice President of VNSNY Hospice and Palliative Care, about how this conversation begins and what comes next in terms of options, hospice, affordability, and more. Read more.

New Physical Therapy Partnership Revolutionizes Post-Surgical Hip and Knee Rehab

From The Huffington Post

In 2014, nearly 800 HSS joint-replacement patients have gone through intensive home rehabilitation, working with physical and occupational therapists from the Visiting Nurse of Service New York (VNSNY) in a unique healthcare partnership designed specifically for today’s changing medical landscape. From January through December 2014, the program demonstrated a low 30-day rehospitalization rate of 2.8%. Read more.

Face Time Helps Mount Sinai, VNSNY Nurses Improve Patient Care


Mount Sinai Hospital and the Visiting Nurse Service of New York developed a clinical initiative to reduce sternal wound infections among cardiac patients, providing a coordinated approach to educate patients on wound care and infection prevention so they can rehab at home instead of at a subacute rehab facility. Nurses working in the joint program credit face-to-face meetings for improved communication and patient care. Read more.

Hannabelle’s Special Day

From The Huffington Post

Hannabelle W. is a hospice patient whose story was featured in “Moments of Life,” a national awareness campaign by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization. Hanabelle’s story illustrates the benefits that early utilization of hospice care can bring to individuals. Read more.

Palliative Care or Hospice? It’s Not About Giving Up

From The Huffington Post

Mrs. G., a woman in her 50s, had been receiving disease-directed care for her breast cancer, but her condition reached a point where the treatment was not only failing to have the desired effect, but was also greatly limiting her quality of life. Read more.

Offering the Gift of Comfort

From The New York Times

Kei Okada, 55, is a spiritual care counselor for the Visiting Nurse Service of New York. He visited with Edward Harris and his wife, Ruth, at their Manhattan home. Read more.

Mount Sinai, VNSNY Nurses Cut Readmissions

From Crain’s New York (subscription)

In 2011, Mount Sinai Hospital noticed that a large volume of post-surgical cardiac patients were readmitted with sternal wound infections. With the Visiting Nurse Service of New York, the hospital launched a cardiothoracic wound-care program to develop standardized practices and teaching tools for use in the hospital and at home. Read more.

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