Home Health Business Briefs: Illinois’ Mega Merger, Univita Health Appoints CFO

As one of the fastest-growing sectors in the United States, home health care is teeming with activity — from acquisitions and partnerships to new leadership appointments and promotions. Here’s the latest news buzzing around the industry:

New Home Health Alliance to Form, VNAA Appoints Board Member

Barnabas Health, New Jersey’s largest hospital system, and the Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) Health Group are partnering to keep patients healthy at home so they’ll spend less time in hospitals and other health care facilities, according to local reports.

Barnabas Health Home Care and Hospice and the VNA Health Group said the goal of their partnership is “improving the quality and efficiency of post‐acute care, home care and hospice in the communities they serve.”

“Hospitals and home care providers must find new ways to collaborate and coordinate care to provide a more seamless patient experience, reduce unnecessary rehospitalizations, and improve health outcomes for the patients and populations we serve,” Barry H. Ostrowsky, chief executive of Barnabas Health, said in a statement. “This partnership will position our organizations to meet these emerging challenges, while maintaining focus on delivering the highest quality post‐acute services.”

Steven H. Landers, president and CEO of VNA Health Group, said the partnership with Barnabas, which he expects to become final in six to 12 months, will be similar to VNA’s existing hospital joint ventures with Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, Englewood Hospital and Medical Center and Cape Regional Medical Center.

In an unrelated announcement, Landers was also appointed to the Visiting Nurse Associations of America’s (VNAA) Board of Directors. 

Among the appointment of Landers to the Board of Directors, are five other members representing a variety of nonprofit home-based care providers and health care industry partners.

“VNAA is proud to welcome this dynamic group to the Board of Directors. They were selected for their innovative leadership and expertise at their own organizations and for a commitment to advancing home-based care as a driving force in population health,” said Tracey Moorhead, president and CEO of VNAA. “We look forward to integrating these new members with our new slate of Board officers and setting a strategic vision to continue the organization’s mission to support, promote and advance nonprofit providers of community-based healthcare.”

Landers, who was appointed as president and CEO of VNA Health Group in 2012, is currently serving as the first physician CEO of the second largest nonprofit Visiting Nurse Association in the nation. He has extensive experience leading organizational changes and innovations that strengthen health care delivery and improve value.

His history of success at Cleveland Clinic and VNA Health Group as evidenced by improved quality of care, market relevance, employee engagement, and cost efficiency will allow him to contribute targeted and comprehensive guidance to VNAA.

Prior to joining VNA Health Group, Landers served as the director of the Center for Home Care and Community Rehabilitation and director of Post-Acute Operations for the Cleveland Clinic.

3 Illinois Hospices Merge Creating End-of-Life Care Powerhouse

Three Illinois nonprofit hospice companies are forming what’s expected to be the largest end-of-life provider by patient volume in the state, according to a recent Chicago Tribune article

The companies — Horizon Hospice & Palliative Care, JourneyCare and Midwest Palliative & Hospice CareCenter — will emerge with a new name after the deal is completed June 1, the article notes. 

The combined hospices will care for about 2,500 patients daily in 10 Chicago-area counties. 

Univita Health Appoints New Chief Financial Officer

Univita Health, a post-acute and home health care solutions provider, has appointed Jack S. Greenman as its chief financial officer. Greenman is a seasoned financial health care executive with more than 30 years of management experience.

Prior to joining Univita, Greenman served as the executive vice president and chief financial officer at Scott Holdings, LLC, where he managed assets after the sale of Vista Healthplans for $685 million.

He previously served as the executive vice president and chief financial officer at Florida Healthplan Administrators, LLC, a health care management entity which owned and managed Vista Healthplans, a Florida HMO.

At Vista, Greenman was responsible for financial statements, communication with regulators, risk management and was instrumental in the transition of Vista to Coventry Healthcare in 2007.

Greenman has also served as chief financial officer at PhyAmerica Physician Services, LLC, and Cyber, Inc.

“Jack brings a proven history of increased financial productivity, efficiency and performance to Univita,” said Michael Muchnicki, CEO at Univita. “His fiscal acumen will be invaluable as we grow our services and expand our customer base. Jack has a very strong understanding of the managed care industry and is dedicated to generating quality results and increased customer service.”

Greenman is a Certified Public Accountant licensed in the State of Florida and a member of the American and Florida Institutes of Certified Public Accountants.

VA Awards $2.3 Million in Grants to Boost Home-Based Care, Mental Health Hirings

A pair of grants worth more than $2 million have been awarded by the Department of Veterans Affairs to boost home-based care and hire new staffers specializing in mental health care to aid veterans in the north country, the Watertown Daily Times reports

The first grant, worth $1.6 million, will create a new Home-Based Primary Care team in Watertown, N.Y., that will provide services around Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence Counties. The team will be tasked with providing care to veterans with chronic and disabling conditions that need care beyond in-office doctor appointments, the article states.

A second grant, worth approximately $700,000, will expand the VA’s mental health care in Watertown by hiring six new staffers.

HCA of New York Appoints Board Member

The Home Care Association (HCA) of New York State has appointed June Castle to its board of directors, according to local reports.

Castle is the CFO of Syracuse-based VNA Homecare. She brings 15 years of leadership experience to the HCA Board of Directors.

As a member of VNA Homecare’s executive team, Castle’s leadership and financial expertise have enabled the system to “remain flexible” in adjusting to the “changing needs of the region’s health-care delivery system,” VNA Homecare said in a statement.

Written by Emily Study