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Baton Rouge home health giant gobbles up more Midwest competitors



BATON ROUGE, La. – Baton Rouge-based Amedisys is buying the home health and hospice arm of the Visiting Nurse Association, a nonprofit founded 125 years ago, which has roots in the Midwest.

Amedisys is most interested in its home health and hospice business in Omaha, Nebraska, and Council Bluffs, Iowa.

The deal is expected to close on July 1.

Visiting Nurse Association, with 400 employees, considered Amedisys for the deal because it wanted to “remain financially strong and successful for years to come,” according to a news release.

It was not immediately clear how many employees would be offered jobs at Amedisys once the deal closes.

The VNA places nurses in homeless and domestic violence shelters; conducts home visits for at-risk families with small children; does flu and coronavirus vaccinations; supports schools; and provides home health and hospice services for those without health insurance or in extreme poverty. The other aspects of the nursing group will remain under its independent control after the deal closes, according to the organization.

Amedisys will provide additional scale and resources that will expand opportunities to care for more patients and expand home health services to more communities across Nebraska and Iowa, said Chris Gerard, president and chief operations officer of Amedisys.

Amedisys has grown significantly over the years. It is based in Baton Rouge with roughly 500 workers at the corporate office in addition to an executive office in Nashville, Tennessee with just shy of 70 workers there.

Amedisys has more than 514 care centers across 39 states. It has grown to more than 418,000 patients across its network and has upwards of 21,000 employees nationwide.