Mary Ann Christopher President and CEO, Visiting Nurse Service of New York (VNSNY)

Mary Ann Christopher has served as president and CEO of the Visiting Nurse Service of New York (VNSNY), the nation’s largest not-for-profit home- and community-based health care organization, since January 2012. She is a leading national voice on a wide range of health care issues, particularly on delivering patient-centered community-based care to diverse, changing populations across a continuum of needs.

VNSNY provides post-acute, long-term and hospice and palliative care, as well as rehabilitative and mental health services to more than 140,000 New Yorkers annually throughout all five boroughs of New York City, and Westchester, Nassau, Rockland and Suffolk Counties. Founded in 1893 by Lillian Wald, the nation’s first public health nurse, VNSNY also operates the largest Medicaid Managed Long Term Care Plan (MLTC) in New York City and New York State, as well as a Medicare Advantage Plan for high-cost and chronically ill populations. In her role at VNSNY, Mrs. Christopher aims to forge broad-based partnerships and leverage an asset-building approach in order to increase access to high-quality, compassionate care, promote wellness and disease prevention, and reliably improve health outcomes.

Prior to joining VNSNY, Mary Ann Christopher was president and CEO of the Visiting Nurse Association Health Group (VNAHG), the largest Visiting Nurse Association in New Jersey and among the largest in the nation, with 1,700 employees providing comprehensive care to more than 127,000 individuals and families. Under her leadership, the agency grew from a two-county provider to a statewide asset and developed a broad array of programs, including clinics for the poor, school-based health services, a mobile nursing program to the deinstitutionalized mentally ill, and community outreach and prevention programs. The agency, where Mrs. Christopher began her career as a nurse in 1983, continues to serve as an essential safety net for thousands of individuals and families without access to primary and preventative services.

One of the region’s most visible nurse-leaders, Mrs. Christopher regularly interacts with decision-makers on Capitol Hill, as well as in Albany and New York City, to develop innovative legislative and regulatory policies to enhance the delivery of home care, hospice and community-based health care services. Her public policy work has included the advancement of public/private partnerships to address the growing nursing shortage, expansion of telehealth services, ensuring adequate reimbursement for Medicare home health, improving Medicaid managed care programs and strengthening her state’s human services system for its most vulnerable populations. She has published extensively in a wide range of national nursing and health care journals, including The Remington Report, Modern Healthcare, and the American Journal of Nursing.