One of the best parts of my job has been getting to know the CEOs of VNAA member agencies. I am inspired daily by these conversations and honored to work with these leaders.
This week, I had the distinct pleasure of speaking with Judy Cote, RN, MSN, CEO, Chicopee VNA, Massachusetts. Judy has been with Chicopee for only 18 months. Here is a short list of her many accomplishments to date: implemented telehealth, EMR, physician portal, and staff education on “teach back” principles and clinical pathways for heart failure and COPD. And here is the result: hospital readmissions have declined from 31% to 15% in one year! Better: her agency has been profitable for the last four months, a significant turnaround for Chicopee.
Judy shared with me her stories of wearing down a resistant hospital executive who was eventually stunned by Chicopee's quality outcomes and of working with nursing homes in her community to educate on-site staff. There are still significant challenges for Chicopee and other small agencies but it is important to highlight and showcase these successes. Judy is not just a leader who is transforming one small agency in Massachusetts. Judy embodies the story that VNAA is telling here in Washington – to demonstrate the quality and value of our nation's nonprofit home health and hospice providers.
To better demonstrate this value proposition, VNAA earlier this week released the first Case Study Compendium. This is our first official publication to highlight the evolution of nonprofit home health and hospice in new care delivery and payment models. VNAA continues to identify these case studies and will publish future editions on a regular basis. Meanwhile, I will look forward to learning from, and being inspired by, VNAA's CEO leaders.