NAHC, NHPCO Announce Transition Board Ahead Of Potential Merger

The National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) and National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) merger took another step forward this week as the two associations announced the creation of a transitional board that will usher in a combined organization.

The new board will oversee the transition to a new, consolidated organization if, and when, the merger is completed. The merger is expected to be completed in 2024.

The transition board includes 20 members with a wide variety of experience in the home-based and post-acute care spaces.


“Across the continuum of serious illness care, providers are looking to the future working to ensure we can continue to provide high-quality, patient-centered care even as patient needs and payment models shift,” Melinda Gruber, proposed vice chair of the transition board, said in a statement. “The association representing providers should be similarly future-focused. This proposed transition board is the right group of people at the right time to take NHPCO and NAHC into the future to continue providing value for our current and future members.”

Melinda Gruber is the vice president of Corewell Health.

In October, NAHC President William A. Dombi announced that his organization and NHPCO were planning to merge. The plan came with what Dombi described as an “aggressive timeline,” hoping the merger would be done by 2024.


From now until the potential merger, NAHC and NHPCO will be operating business as usual and will work as two separate entities. If the merger is finalized, the two will then integrate their businesses together and will work on a combined strategy that will be put in place for 2025.

As far as Dombi’s future with the association, he is expected to stay on board through 2024 to see through the potential merger. After that it is still up in the air.

“The intention is that I’m here through 2024,” Dombi told HHCN in October. “With an expectation that, assuming we come together somewhere in the middle of the year, then I’m there in the role of the new organization as the president emeritus. Something like that.”

The organizations have been moving forward under the guidance of a steering committee made up of members of both NAHC and NHPCO, with support from the consulting firm McKinley Advisors.

“This proposed transition board is made up of experienced veterans of the care at home community, who possess the vision to understand both the opportunity and obligation to build an even stronger future for our sectors of the American health care delivery system,” NAHC’s board chair Ken Albert said in a statement. “Fulfilling our pledge to return the home to the center of American health care will require a new organization with the expanded expertise of both NAHC and NHPCO. I am very confident that this talented group of leaders is up for the challenges ahead, and that our collective focus will remain on the needs of our members as they endeavor to meet the demands of providing high-quality health care.”

Albert is currently CEO of Androscoggin Home Care + Hospice, as well as board chair for NAHC.

Proposed members of the transition board include:

  • Ken Albert, CEO, Androscoggin Home Healthcare + Hospice (transition board chair)
  • David Causby, CEO, Gentiva
  • Trisha Crissman, interim president and CEO, CommonSpirit Health at Home
  • Melinda Gruber, vice president, Corewell Health (transition board vice chair)
  • Demetress Harrell, CEO, Hospice in the Pines
  • Susan D. Lloyd, president and CEO, Delaware Hospice, Inc.
  • Tarrah Lowry, COO, Trustbridge / Empath Health
  • Christine McMichael, executive director, Hospice & Palliative Care Federation of Massachusetts
  • Mark Morse, CEO, Enclara Pharmacia
  • Mary Myers, retired president, Johns Hopkins Home Care Group
  • John Olajide, CEO, Axxess,
  • Bob Parker, chief clinical officer, Kindful Health
  • Susan Ponder-Stansel, CEO Alivia Care, Inc.
  • Sara Ratcliffe, executive director, Illinois HomeCare & Hospice Council
  • Lynne Sexten, CEO Agrace Hospice and Palliative Care (transition board secretary)
  • William Simione, CEO SimiTree, (transition board treasurer)
  • Jennifer Sheets, NAHC board member, former CEO, Interim Healthcare, Caring Brands International
  • Beth Slepian, president and CEO, Granite VNA
  • Dave Totaro, chief government affairs officer, BAYADA Home Health Care
  • Nick Westfall, CEO, VITAS Healthcare

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