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About Us

A Proud Tradition of Excellence

Ellen Wood, the first nurse of the District Nursing Association of Northern Westchester Visiting Nurse Association of Hudson Valley
History Car Visiting Nurse Association of Hudson Valley

The Visiting Nurse Association of Hudson Valley’s inspiration came from Ellen Wood, a young Mount Kisco resident who saw women in her family caring for sick neighbors and became determined to get the proper training to carry on this noble tradition. In 1896, she graduated first in her class at Johns Hopkins Training School for Nurses and quickly applied her skills during the Spanish-American War.

Back in Mount Kisco in 1898, Mrs. Henry Marquand organized local women into an auxiliary of the American Red Cross Relief Committee. Their purpose was to gather surgical and hospital supplies for wounded soldiers’ care.

Visiting Nurse Association of Hudson ValleyWhen peace came that Fall, Ellen Wood joined the Red Cross Relief Committee as their first nurse, saying “Now we have done so much to provide nursing care for the soldiers, why cannot we do the same for our people at home?” On November 15, 1898, the Red Cross Relief Committee became the District Nursing Association of Northern Westchester—the ancestor of the VNA of Hudson Valley.

Things have obviously changed enormously at the VNA of Hudson Valley from the days of nurses on foot to today’s thoroughly modern practitioners. But the unifying theme has always remained the same—care, compassion and commitment. Miss Wood exemplified our approach to providing the finest care at home more than a century ago, and we are proud to carry on that tradition today.



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