In 1899, Concord District Nursing Association was formed to serve the health needs of underserved residents of Concord, New Hampshire. Now known as Granite VNA, the agency has grown to become New Hampshire’s largest not-for-profit home health and hospice provider, and 2024 marks its 125th anniversary.
From its humble beginnings with a single nurse, Katherine Hill, and a handful of volunteers who traversed Concord by foot, bicycle and streetcar to provide care to the city’s most vulnerable residents, Granite VNA now employs more than 400 highly skilled team members, comprising nurses, therapists, social workers, spiritual care providers and administrative staff, as well as 150 award-winning volunteers. The agency provides a wide range of services including home care, hospice, palliative care, pediatric and maternal child health, and community clinics and wellness programs to residents of 82 cities and towns in Central New Hampshire and the Lakes Region.
“Over the course of our 125-year history, our agency has continually evolved, constantly evaluating and implementing new treatments, specialties and technology to meet the ever-changing needs of the people we serve. Our mission to provide ‘quality health care and promote wellness in homes and communities through all stages of life,’ often to those who are most vulnerable, has never wavered,” said Granite VNA President and CEO Beth Slepian, MBA, PT. “It is our great privilege to be able to enhance the lives of people in our community in such a meaningful way.”
In January 2020, Concord Regional VNA and Central NH VNA & Hospice (which was founded in 1918 as the VNA Wolfeboro and Vicinity) announced their intention to merge. In April 2021, the merger became official and the agency announced its new name, Granite VNA. With a new, distinctive brandmark, reflecting deep New Hampshire roots, the strength of its team, and its ongoing commitment to serving the state’s residents, the agency expanded its service region from 44 to 82 communities in central New Hampshire and the Lakes Region.
“The past four years have been truly extraordinary in many ways,” said Slepian. “Through our merger, we have once again adapted to meet the growing demand for health care at home, and we are able to attract, retain and develop a highly skilled workforce to ensure sustainable care for the community. We have emerged stronger, and continue to evolve, adding services and strengthening our team, amidst an ever-changing health care landscape.”
Innovation in the delivery of health care at home is integral to the organization’s work and includes telemonitoring and virtual nursing visits. In addition to traditional clinical care, the organization is leveraging technology to best serve patients and their families. They are also providing educational programs to help older adults successfully age at home and prepare for their futures.
In 2023, the agency made 134,090 visits to 8,090 home care patients as well as 27,447 visits to 1,143 patients on hospice. Granite VNA team members traveled a total of 1,838,643 miles to provide services and programs to community members in need. In all, the agency provided $5.2 million in community benefits.
Granite VNA is planning to mark this significant milestone throughout 2024, beginning with its signature “Passion for Caring” fundraising event on Wednesday, May 1, at the Barn at Bull Meadow in Concord. An ongoing historical series will also be presented on its Facebook and LinkedIn social media channels.
“We are excited to mark this wonderful milestone, both as an opportunity to remember and honor our legacy organizations and to look ahead to our future, which is incredibly bright,” added Slepian.
For more information about Granite VNA, and to learn more about the agency’s history in New Hampshire and various programs and events in 2024, visit http://www.granitevna.org.