Business Briefs: VNA Health Group Appoints New COO

VNA Health Group Appoints New COO

Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) Health Group has appointed Vito Buccellato, MPA, LNHA, to chief operating officer, a newly created position for the organization.

VNA Health Group is New Jersey’s largest and the nation’s second largest not-for-profit visiting nurse association that serves more than 120,000 individuals and families. The association provides home health, hospice, palliative and community-based care and private pay personal care services.

In his new role, Buccellato, a New York City hospital executive, will oversee the strategic direction, expansion and operation of VNA Health Group’s three new programmatic institutes, private care services, IT support and analytics, maintenance and facilities, among other teams.

Buccellato previously served as COO at Coney Island Hospital where he oversaw daily operations and service delivery for the 371-bed facility. Prior to Coney Island Hospital, he served in a dual role as executive vice president for long term care, assisted living and adult day care and vice president for clinical services at Brookdale Hospital and Medical Center and the Schulman ad Schachne Institute for Nursing and Rehab.

ElderServe and GuardiaCare Services Proceed with Merger

Two Kentucky-based non-profit health care services providers have received $75,000 in funding from the James Graham Brown Foundation to complete their merger by June 30.

ElderServe, an in-home care services provider for disabled and elderly people, is merging with GuardiaCare Services Inc., a non-profit that develops programs to serve the financial and legal needs of seniors and disabled adults.

The merger will combine services of the non-profit organizations. Susan Smith, CEO of GuardiaCare, noted that the merger will make the resulting organization a “one-stop shop” for resources and services for seniors ad disabled adults.

GuardiaCare Services will become a division of the ElderServe agency. ElderServe has about 80 employees, 60 of which are home care assistants. The dozen employees at GuardiaCare will remain at its current location until the building is sold.

Amada Senior Care Expands to Wisconsin and Twin Cities 

Amada Senior Care, a non-medical in-home care and assisted living placement counseling provider with franchises across the country, has expanded into two new territories—Wisconsin and Twin Cities, Minnesota.

Amada franchise partner D.R. Salerno and his wife Ronda have opened up an Amada Senior Care office in the Greater Milwaukee area. The grand opening of Amada Senior Care Greater Milwaukee will take place Friday, April 1. The office will serve the southeast Wisconsin region, including Milwaukee, Waukesha, Washington, Ozaukee, Kenosha, Racine and Walworth counties.

Franchise partner Greg Getchell, who has 19 years of health care and medical device industry experience, has opened up an Amada Senior Care franchise in Twin Cities, Minnesota—Amada’s first Minnesota location. The location’s grand opening will be held on Friday, April 1.

Amada Twin Cities will provide non-medical in-home care for seniors with services that include bathing, dressing, meal preparation, light housekeeping and medication management. The agency will also provide senior housing advisory service to counsel families and seniors on finding the right assisted living setting.

HCR Home Care Opens New Office in DeWitt, New York

HCR Home Care, a New York-based home care company that provides skilled nursing, rehab and specialty care programs, has opened a new office in DeWitt to serve Central New York. The company held a formal opening March 15.

HCR Home Care has 90 local health care professionals working in the region, serving Onondaga, Oswego, Cayuga, Cortland, Madison and Jefferson counties in New York. The company also has locations in Homer and Cortland County and serves more than 600 people in the Central New York region.

“This new, centralized office enables us to expand our services to more people in the region and to provide greater support for our clinical staff,” Elizabeth Zicari, president of HCR Home Care, said.

In the greater state, HCR has offices in Clinton, Delaware, Genesee, Monroe, Schoharie and Washington counties. The company employs a total of nearly 800 people. Offering Home Health Training and Support Videos, a primarily free, non-profit web-based video training resource, will soon be releasing several new video series and instructive resources for home health care support.

The content will focus on safe food handling, medication expiration and labels, food expiration, infection control in the home, awareness of fraud or abuse, family dynamics, communication techniques and ways to detect issues that should be reporter to families or supervisors, the company announced.

The organization, which has been providing videos since 2006, plans to add 12 video presentations over the coming months, and will offer users access to the video “bundles” for home health care to purchase to help their employees meet specific qualifications. The bundles will include new videos and other topics currently available such as dementia car, hoarding, infection control, safe transfers, confidentiality, dehydration, hearing loss, oral health, ways to engage seniors in their homes and more.

The organization will also include testing materials that companies can use to make sure employees understand the concepts and industry regulations.

“By giving home health care companies the ability to use, we play an active role in providing quality care for the aging population,” said Nina Guerra, executive direct of “Our goal is to help seniors stay at home longer in a safe environment, while improving their health and preventing hospital readmissions.”

Written by Amy Baxter