Concord Regional Visiting Nurse Association has merged with Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice. The combined organization will operate under the brand Granite VNA. Both providers are located in New Hampshire, serving a combined 82 communities in that state.
Concord Regional was established in 1899 as the Concord District Nursing Association, whereas Central New Hampshire VNA came into being through a previous merger between Community Health & Hospice and the VNA & Hospice of Southern Carroll County in 2010. The unified organization, Granite VNA, provides hospice, home health care, palliative care, home-based pediatrics and maternal health services and personal care.
“Over the past 121 years, our name and location have changed, our technology has advanced and our services have expanded,” said Granite VNA CEO Beth Slepian. “This merger allows us to improve access to care for individuals and families, respond to growing demands for specialty clinical services, enhance and expand community wellness programming, and attract, retain, and develop a highly skilled workforce.”
Granite employs more than 470 clinicians and staff. The combined company’s governance includes members of Concord Regional and Central NH VNA’s previous boards. Slepian, formerly the CEO of Concord Regional, will lead Granite VNA with Central NH VNA’s CEO Lisa Dupuis coming on as chief operating officer.
Factors that drove the organizations to consider the merger include a range of challenges that home health and hospice providers experience in care delivery. Among the difficulties the merger is working to address are complexities in technology, licensing and administrative requirements, and demand for services that require a higher level of expertise.
Concord Regional VNA provided more than $5.1 million in community benefits during its 2019 fiscal year. The merger with Central NH VNA will improve sustainability in an increasingly competitive hospice provider market.
Concord Regional rolled out an advanced illness management program during 2020 that incorporates palliative care principles. The organization defined advanced illness as late-stage chronic disease that threatens health and the patient’s ability to function.
Hospice utilization in New Hampshire reached 47.8% among Medicare decedents in 2018, according to the National Hospice & Palliative Care Organization. This is compared to a national average of slightly more than 50%.
“Our agency has endured and expanded over for more than a century by understanding the needs of our community and adapting to provide the best possible care,” said Slepian. “We are excited for our future as Granite VNA.”