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More than 100 years ago, Visiting Nurses invented home healthcare in America. Now, we are reinventing home care practice with CHAMP, a program developed by home care specialists who understand the challenges that nurses and nurse managers face working in the home.


In May, the VNAA began accepting applications from home care agencies for the VNAA C urricula for Homecare Advances in Management and Practice (CHAMP) program, the first national initiative designed to improve the quality of geriatric home healthcare services. This prestigious new program, funded by a $4.4 million grant from The Atlantic Philanthropies, will provide selected agencies with invaluable training designed by world-class leaders in home care and geriatric health.


If you are a nurse manager, you will appreciate how the CHAMP program understands your daily pressures. CHAMP will provide you with the tools to augment your management and clinical skills and enhance your credibility with both clinicians and senior management. As you improve the competency and skills of your nurses, you will also improve patient care, the ultimate goal that inspires us all. The VNAA understands that goal and your special role in a very unique and demanding healthcare field.


Home health nurses have been delivering specialized care to patients in the home for over 100 years. But, surprisingly, home healthcare is just beginning to address the need for a national effort to support "best practice" or evidence-based care for older patients who make up nearly 70% of the home care population.


The CHAMP program, open to both for-profit and nonprofit home care providers, was jointly developed by the VNAA and the Center for Home Care Policy and Research (CHCPR) at the Visiting Nurse Service of New York. According to Penny Hollander Feldman, PhD, Director of CHCPR, "CHAMP is innovative because we are not using traditional 'lecture-at-them' techniques, which studies show do not change the way nursing skills are practiced. Instead, we are using Web-based training that measures and supports ongoing practice improvement."


The VNAA CHAMP program, using a train-the-trainer model, seeks to improve care for older patients and to embed in home care agencies the capacity for continuous practice improvement. Front-line nurse managers will be provided with specialized management training and tools to facilitate the field nurse's acquisition of these best practices and ultimately improve geriatric care. The first VNAA CHAMP program topic will focus on Medication Management, an issue that has considerable impact on the home care patient's health and quality of life.


So let's assess if you are ready for CHAMP:


* Are you a team leader, nursing supervisor, or front-line nurse manager, looking for a way to strengthen and improve your practice?


* Do you wish you had more opportunities to learn about strategies to help the nurses who are in the field?


* Are you one of the many who entered home health nursing management with little or no formal management training?


* Do you wish you had more meaningful, timely tools to evaluate the impact of the care your nurses deliver?



If you answered YES to any of these questions, call the VNAA office in Boston at 617-737-3200 or go to to learn how you and your agency can become a part of this exciting, groundbreaking, national home care initiative!!