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VNSW Celebrates 120th Anniversary

February, 9th 2021 in Press Releases

In 1901, a local physician engaged a group of charity-minded women in starting a nursing service to care for patients discharged from the wards of hospitals in Yonkers. One hundred and twenty years later, that enterprise has evolved into the Visiting Nurse Services in Westchester, Inc., (VNSW) the largest independent, not-for-profit Medicare-certified home healthcare agency in Westchester. The agency, which also serves residents of  the Bronx, Dutchess, Putnam and Rockland counties, is observing its 120th anniversary in 2021 with a wide range of new programs and services that build on its tradition of “keeping our community healthy at home,” the theme of the year-long celebration.

According to VNSW President & CEO, Timothy P. Leddy, “This milestone anniversary is an opportunity to celebrate our agency’s impact on the health and well-being of generations of individuals and families over the past 120 years. We are proud of the many ways that our agency has evolved with the times to meet the changing needs of our community. By continuing to leverage new technologies and best practices in care, we have been able to expand and enhance vital services that safeguard members of our community in the comfort of their homes. In keeping with this theme, 2021 will be a celebration not only of our past achievements, but also of our current and future innovations in home and community-based care.”

Toward this end, the Center has put into place a new strategic plan, which centers on the development of new, cutting-edge programs and the expansion of community services. The agency will kick off its anniversary activities by launching next month a new Community Care Navigation group, an affiliate agency that will expand VNSW’s continuum of care to include life planning and wellness services. The agency is also currently piloting an innovative fall prevention program that engages patients in a series of interactive exercises and games that build strength, balance and coordination--accessible at home via iPads or laptop devices.  Programs like these underscore VNSW’s “high-tech, high-touch” approach to patient care, combining the best of both worlds, said Leddy.

Initially, the agency had planned to host a large, celebratory Anniversary Gala later in 2021 to thank its long-standing healthcare and business partners, donors, sponsors and staff. However, in light of the ongoing pandemic, Leddy said that the agency’s Board has decided to wait until 2022 to hold this event, “hopefully in person”—in essence extending the celebration over 18 months. There is also a plan to host one or more small, socially distanced, in-person gatherings for agency supporters, perhaps combined with virtual participation. VNSW will also conduct a number of webinars on topics relating to preventative health and aging in place for the broader community.

“As we celebrate 120 years of service, our message to residents of the communities we serve,” said Leddy, “is that we pledge to continue to fulfill the mission which has guided us for over a century. We are an agency that has been here, and will be here, to help individuals of all ages, from all backgrounds, with a wide range of home care needs to thrive at home, to age safely, with dignity and with all of the care and respect they need and deserve.”   




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