Latest News

Memorial Service Hosted by Bennington VNA & Hospice

The Bennington Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice, an office of the VNA & Hospice of the Southwest Region, invites the community to attend a free memorial service on Sunday, December 11 at 3pm at the Unitarian Universalist Meetinghouse on 108 School Street in Bennington. Through music, poetry, art and fellowship, this special ceremony, open to individuals of all ages and faith, will help pay tribute to loved ones that have passed away.  For questions about the service or to register, please call 802.442.5502

CLICK HERE: PSA about the Memorial Service

Coping with the Holidays Workshop Offered in Bennington

CLICK HERE: PSA about the Holiday Workshop

The Bennington Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice, an office of the VNA & Hospice of the Southwest Region, will offer a free workshop to help individuals who have experienced the loss of a loved one learn coping skills during the holiday season.

The workshop will be held on Monday, December 5 from 6-8pm and again on Thursday, December 8 from 2:30-4:30pm in the Rotary Room at the Bennington Free Library on Silver Street in Bennington. Led by Lucy Ijams, Chaplain and Elizabeth Fredland, LICSW from the Bennington VNA & Hospice, participants will learn suggestions for coping with loss and be provided with resources and information. Free materials are available for those who are unable to attend either date. To register for the workshop, please call 802.442.5502

“This workshop will provide individuals and families with the tools they may need to cope with loss this holiday season,” says Nicole Moran, MSN, BA, RN and director of the Hospice program. “Our caregivers, volunteers and staff care deeply for the families of our patients and this workshop is just one of the ways we can help them deal with grief and loss. “

bennington-grief-workshop

About the Hospice program of the VNAHSR

Under the direction of Allan Eisemann, MD, oncologist and Medical Director of VNAHSR, the staff provides a variety of services to patients and their families in both Rutland and Bennington County. A patient must be diagnosed with a terminal illness and admitted to the program by a physician. The attending physician continues to be involved in the patient’s care, and patients and family members work directly with nurses, social workers, chaplains, nurse aides and volunteers.

Remembrance Ornaments On Sale

remembrance-ornaments

click on image above for an order form

Remembrance ornaments are now on sale and are a meaningful way to honor a loved one or friend while helping the Hospice program of the Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice of the Southwest Region (VNAHSR). Each ornament is beautifully crafted and engraved by New England Ornaments.

Remembrance OrnamentThis year’s tear-drop shaped ornaments are made of a clear optical glass with beveled edges and can be engraved with the name of a special loved one and a date of significance. Ornament measures 3-3/4 long x 2-3/4 at its widest.  Ornaments are tied with a satin ribbon and presented in a dark silver gift box.  Ornaments are $20 each. Orders can be shipped directly or picked up at the Tree of Remembrance ceremony on December 6 (for pick-up at the ceremony orders must be placed by November 18).

“Since we began this project Remembrance Ornaments have been given as gifts to loved ones living across the United States,” says Nicole Moran, MSN, BA, RN and Director of the Hospice program.. “For some people, giving the Remembrance Ornament has become a family tradition. It’s heartwarming to know we are part of that special tradition.”

For information, please call 802.775.0568

Tree of Remembrance Ceremony Hosted in Rutland

The Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice of the Southwest Region (VNAHSR) will host its 28th Annual Tree of Remembrance ceremony at the Franklin Conference Center, Howe Square in Rutland on Tuesday, December 6 at 5pm.  The event is free and open to the public. For inclement weather a snow date of December 13 has been set.

The Tree of Remembrance ceremony is a way for community members to reflect, honor and celebrate loved ones and friends who have passed away. The ceremony will feature music by the Hospice Trillium choir, remarks by Hospice medical director Allan Eisemann, MD, recitation of loved ones’ names, the lighting of the tree, refreshments and fellowship.

Director of Hospice & Palliative Care“This ceremony is about families who have lost a loved one and their legacy,” says Nicole Moran, MSN, BA, RN and director of the Hospice program. “Our caregivers, volunteers and staff care deeply for the families of our patients and offer a variety of services to them to help deal with grief and loss. This ceremony is a beloved annual event and is just one of the many ways we want to honor and remember their loved ones for years to come.

To add a loved one’s name to the wall of remembrance, to RSVP or for event questions, please call 802.775.0568.

 

 

Quality Improvement Specialist Passes Coding Exam

ann-pollockThe Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice of the Southwest Region (VNAHSR) is pleased to announce that Ann Pollock, RN, BSN, COS-C, HCS-D, recently passed the Home Care Coding Specialist – Diagnosis (HCS–D) exam through the Board of Medical Specialty Coding & Compliance (BMSC), the credentialing arm of the Association of Home Care Coding & Compliance (AHCC).

The HCS-D credential is earned by professionals with advanced skills in classifying medical data from home health patient records. Coding specialists review patients’ records and assign numeric codes for each diagnosis. Pollock, through the exam demonstrated expertise in the application of ICD-10-CM conventions and guidelines and in-depth clinical knowledge of medical terminology, anatomy/physiology, disease processes, pathophysiology, and pharmacology. Professionals with this designation are able to use their coding knowledge to better work with clinical staff in understanding complex coding principles and guidelines, and to ensure proper reimbursement from payer sources.

Pollock, a 26-year employee of the VNAHSR began her career as a staff nurse and has held a variety of managerial positions. She was recently named Clinical Informatics Specialist.

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About the Association of Home Care Coding & Compliance (AHCC)

AHCC is the community for professionals who are dedicated to providing quality care in post-acute care settings and establishing, meeting, and maintaining standards of excellence in their area of expertise. AHCC’s credentialing arm, the Board of Medical Specialty Coding & Compliance (BMSC), offers professional credentials, including the only nationally accredited home health coding credential that tests coding skills exclusively, the Home Care Coding Specialist—Diagnosis (HCS-D), and the Home Care Clinical Specialist – OASIS (HCS-O) .

AHCC also engages in advocacy activities that focus attention on the vital role home care plays in meeting the national goals of ensuring affordable, quality care for all, while lowering health care costs.

Keep the Flu Away

We’ve been fortunate to have enjoyed some of the best summer weather on record.  But these beautiful, warm days will soon fade, as we enter the cool, crisp weather of fall.  And who knows what this winter will bring? One thing we do know is that we want to stay healthy during the winter months. And one of the best ways to do just that is to get your annual flu shot. It’s the single best way to prevent the flu.

You can get your flu shot at one of the public flu clinics held at convenient locations in communities throughout Rutland County and in Dorset and Rupert. Rutland Area Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice (RAVNAH) has scheduled a number of community flu clinics for peoples age 18 and older, starting September 21.RAVNAH offers regular strength flu and pneumonia vaccines and a high dose flu vaccine especially developed for people age 65 and older.  Ask your doctor if the high dose vaccine is right for you.

When should I get a flu shot?

Here in Vermont flu activity most commonly peaks in January or February. Getting vaccinated any time between September and November can ensure you have immunity to protect yourself through the flu season.

Who should get a flu shot?

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends flu shots for:

  • Anyone 6 months of age and older.
  • People with chronic health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease or asthma.
  • People with weakened immune systems.
  • People who live with, or provide care for, children and adults.
  • Women who will be pregnant during the flu season.

Who should get a pneumonia vaccine?

The Centers for disease Control (CDC) recommends pneumonia vaccinations for:

  •  All adults 65 years of age and older
  • Anyone 2 through 64 years of age with a chronic illness
  • Anyone 19 through 64 years of age who is a smoker or has asthma
  • Women who smoke or have asthma, have a chronic illness or compromised immune system should be immunized before becoming pregnant.

 Preventing the Flu

The first and most important step is to get a flu shot, but practicing good health habits can also help. Here are some tips to keep the aches, pains, sneezes and sniffles at bay:

    • Wash your hands well and often throughout the day or use sanitizing hand rub.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, mouth or nose.
    • Avoid close contact with those who are ill and stay home if you are sick.
    • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, not your hands.
    • Get plenty of sleep, drink lots of fluids and eat nutritious foods, stay physically active and manage your stress.

 If you get sick with the flu

Unlike the common cold, flu symptoms are usually more severe and can come on suddenly. Call your health care provider if your flu symptoms are very serious or if you have chronic health conditions. Common flu symptoms include:

  • fever (usually high)
  • headache, muscle aches, chills
  • runny or stuffy nose, sore throat , dry cough
  • extreme tiredness
  • vomiting and sometimes diarrhea (more often in children)

For a full listing of RAVNAH’s public flu clinics, visit www.ravnah.org or call RAVNAH’s flu hotline at 770-1574.

 

VNAHSR Recognition Dinner

The VNA & Hospice of the Southwest Region celebrated its outstanding staff at a recent Employee Recognition Dinner recognizing all the employees from Rutland, Bennington and Dorset offices. Another successful year of caring for those who count on us in our communities.

Family Photos

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