Merger, handshake

The National Association for Home Care & Hospice and the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization are considering joining forces, the two organizations disclosed on Thursday.

The boards of NHPCO and NAHC this week signed a non-binding Letter of Intent to pursue the possible combination of both organizations into a new, as-of-yet unnamed organization, the organizations stated in a news release.

“With decades of experience in hospice and home care, NHPCO and NAHC members are the long-standing experts, and they are evolving to meet patient needs in a shifting environment,” Melinda Gruber, PhD, MBA, CNA, NHPCO board chair, said in a statement. “As we look ahead, we see an opportunity for the organizations representing those providers to evolve. In this time of change, we are acting with intention and care to continue meeting the needs of providers, patients, families, and communities well into the future.”

In March, the organizations disclosed they had formed a joint exploratory committee to determine how the two organizations can better collaborate and partner on issues.

Kenneth Albert, RN, Esq., NAHC board board, said in a statement that the recent collaborative work between the boards has brought the two groups closer together. The groups have also worked together in the last few months on advocacy and hospice research, he pointed out. Notably, NAHC and NAHC commissioned a study by NORC at the University of Chicago that found that hospice saved Medicare $3.5 billion in 2019.

“Through these efforts, it has become crystal clear that we can do more on behalf of our members by working together,” Albert, who also is president and CEO of Androscoggin Home Healthcare + Hospice, said. “If the current discussions do not lead to a new, combined organization, the outcome will nevertheless be closer working relationships on behalf of community-based and home care providers.”

This is a developing story. Please check back for further updates.