VNA welcomes new president and CEO

Written by Nicholas Serrano. Posted in People in the News

Published on July 20, 2011 with No Comments

Kathleen Holycross has joined the Visiting Nurse Association of Porter County (VNA) as president and CEO, taking the reins from recently retired Executive Director Laura Harting.

“I’m honored to have been chosen to help continue and grow the 40 year legacy of the VNA’s service to the community,” said Holycross.

“As I learned more about the VNA during the interview process, I was impressed with the nearly 500 VNA volunteers, the fact the community banded together to raise the funds necessary for the construction of an inpatient hospice facility, the talented and committed staff, as well as the engagement of the VNA and VNA Foundation boards of directors. It certainly speaks well for the future of the organization.”

Holycross comes to the VNA with more than 30 years experience in healthcare administration.

“I think I bring a strong sense of mission, as well as an understanding that we are stewards of a valuable community asset. I know that we face some immense challenges in terms of funding our services in the next 18 to 24 months and we need to be sure all our resources are focused on our mission of taking care of people in their own homes and continuing our partnership with the communities we serve, our patients, their families and physicians.”

Holycross began her career as a charge nurse and quickly learned she wanted to be on the policy-making end of healthcare. She received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville and went on to receive her Masters of Science in Health Administration from the University of Missouri, Columbia. Most recently, Holycross served for 16 years as the President and CEO of the VNA of Southeast Michigan, Michigan’s largest, independent nonprofit home healthcare and hospice organization.

With looming changes in Medicare and ongoing uncertainty about the rate of reimbursement for care provided, Holycross is working with the VNA and VNA Foundation Boards of Directors as well as staff to ensure the VNA not only survives, but also thrives.

“We’re embarking on developing a strategic plan that will carry us into the future with a better grasp of the needs of the community, the challenges ahead and building upon the strengths of the VNA,” she said. “It’s no secret we all want to stay safe and independent, in our own homes, for as long as possible. And when we reach the end of life, we want to spend our final days with dignity and in comfort, surrounded by our loved ones. Our goal is to make sure the VNA is always here to help,” says Holycross.

The VNA is a nonprofit home health care agency serving Porter County and contiguous portions of Lake, LaPorte, Stark and Jasper counties.

Services include: skilled nursing; physical, occupational and speech therapy; home health aides; social services, telehealth, home and inpatient hospice care and bereavement programs. The VNA also provides assistive care, including Meals on Wheels, Homemaker/Companion Care and Lifeline as well as grief support for children and their families at the VNA Phoenix Center.

For more information about the VNA and programs and services offered, call the VNA at 219-462-5195 or visit the VNA’s website at www.VNAportercounty.org.

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