AUGUSTA, Maine (November 8, 2016) – Dedicated healthcare professionals and volunteers from across Maine were celebrated at the Annual Blaine House Tea on Thursday, November 3. Each year, the Maine Hospice Council and Center for End-of-Life Care, along with the Hospice Alliance of Maine, host an event to honor those who provide exceptional homecare and hospice support to individuals and families in Maine. Three of those outstanding individuals are employees of VNA Home Health Hospice and EMHS: Colleen Hilton, RN, president of VNA Home Health Hospice and senior vice president of EMHS; Kristine Rogers, RN, clinical nurse educator for VNA; and Lisa Harvey-McPherson, RN, EMHS vice president of government relations and National Association for Home Care and Hospice board member.
“I am honored,” said Colleen Hilton. Hilton received the Distinguished Service Award for her leadership, insight, and compassion. “I am very thankful for the wonderful team of skilled clinicians around me who provide care to 1,500 patients receiving our services each day across the state of Maine.”
Kristine Rogers is one of those skilled clinicians who was also honored during this annual event as Caregiver of the Year for her outstanding commitment to the care of her patients. “She always goes above and beyond for patients and the community she serves,” Hilton said about Rogers. “Every year at Christmas, she arranges for VNA to adopt a family in need and provide for them a Christmas they would otherwise not be able to afford. In areas where acute nursing shortages exist, Kris was the first staff nurse to offer to travel to some of our other sites to help out. For many months, she traveled to our Bangor office as a trainer for new nurses in addition to providing patient care. Kris is a resourceful problem solver and finds creative ways to meet patient needs.”
The need for affordable and effective healthcare, homecare, and hospice services will only increase to meet the demand of a growing elderly population. In recognition of her dedication to assuring access to these critical services, Lisa Harvey-McPherson was recognized as Advocate of the Year. “I am honored to have received this award,” shares Harvey-McPherson. “Today, one in five Mainers are 65 or older and they want to age at home. Homecare is more affordable than hospitalized care at a third of the cost. As an organization, EMHS is developing programs to help Mainers do just that. I’m pleased to have dedicated my life’s work to helping Maine people successfully age in place, where they are most comfortable.”
EMHS member organizations share common values and work to ensure delivery of the right care, at the right time, and in the right place. VNA Home Health Hospice, a member of EMHS and based in South Portland, provides home and hospice care in locations throughout southern, eastern, and northern Maine. You can learn more about EMHS, VNA, and our advocacy work by visiting: emhs.org, http://vnahomehealth.org/, and emhs.org/advocacy.