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VNA’s Hospice Care Program Officially Accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Health Care


The Visiting Nurse Association of Porter County has upheld a reputation of quality hospice care for 34 years. Now they have one more accreditation to prove it.

On November 1st, 2016, the VNA’s Hospice Care Program was officially accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Health Care. ACHC is a regulation program respected by hospitals, insurance companies, and health care agencies across the nation. Their approval is not mandatory but it can make or break a contact between a Hospice program and its potential referral sources.

It was a great day for the VNA.

“Truthfully,” said Ann O’Heir, President and CEO of the VNA, “I am so proud of the staff and everything they did. It was countless hours and everyone pitched in. I’m so proud of the team and how everyone came together to accomplish this. It was a great endeavor.”

Organizations that apply for ACHC accreditation decide how much time they would like between acceptance into the process and inspection day. The VNA spent 10 months preparing for scrutiny.

“We made changes to our procedures to reflect current Best Medical Practices. Best Practice is something the VNA has always strived for regardless of the survey process. The VNA is proud to offer the highest quality health care possible to our patients.”

“It’s Hospice,” said O’Heir. "It’s that time in people’s lives that they don’t want to be worried about insurance. Obtaining this ACHC accreditation allows us to work with more insurance providers to ensure our community is cared for in their hour of need.”

Their next step is to replace an outdated record system with a new one.

Staff are training to use an electronic system that will smooth communications within the VNA. With the current system, it is difficult to share information, and time consuming. The new system will use tablets instead of laptops, create a smoother process, and save nurses time in the field. It will launch March 1st.

The ACHC accreditation appreciates efforts like this. They use high standards of performance and quality to test applicants. Most Hospice agencies do not have a Hospice Center, providing in-patient care, or a Phoenix Center reaching out to provide grief support to the youth of our community. The ACHC accreditation is just one more thing that sets the VNA apart from the crowd.

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