Leadership Promotions at Blue Ridge Hospice Support Growth and Expansion of Vital Service

WINCHESTER, Va., Sept. 20, 2022 – Blue Ridge Hospice has expanded and developed its leadership team to support the serious illness and end-of-life care provider’s continued growth and development of new programs to meet community need for its services.

The moves, announced this summer by President and CEO Cheryl Hamilton Fried, include the appointment of:

  • Brendan Flynn, DO, to the newly created position of Chief Medical Officer;
  • Julie Landrio, MD, to fill Dr. Flynn’s position as Medical Director; and
  • Jennifer Martin, RN, to the newly created position of Executive Director of Blue Ridge Hospice.

“The Blue Ridge Hospice Board of Directors during the past 18 months, has been looking at ways the organization can best fulfill its mission as the area’s first provider of hospice and serious illness care,” Hamilton Fried explained. “The result—so far—has been adoption of a pilot program to provide palliative care in area nursing homes and assisted living communities, with the goal eventually to bring the service to individual patients residing in a private residence. Since receiving approval from the Commonwealth of Virginia, we also have begun work on creation of Blue Ridge Independence at Home to launch the area’s first and exclusive PACE (Program of all Inclusive Care for the Elderly) program.”

Palliative care is specialized medical care for people living with a serious illness. It is focused on providing relief from the symptoms and stress of the illness. The goal is to improve quality of life for both the patient and the family. Palliative care is provided by a specially trained team of doctors, nurses, social workers, and other specialists who work together with a patient’s other doctors to provide an extra layer of support. Palliative care is based on the needs of the patient, not on the patient’s prognosis. It is appropriate at any age and at any stage in a serious illness, and it can be provided along with curative treatment.

PACE is an innovative model of care that enables individuals age 55 and over and who are certified by the state to need nursing home care to live safely and comfortably within the community. PACE provides total senior care through a team of professionals that goes far beyond the primary care needs of a PACE participant. Team members, which include a doctor, nurse, home care coordinator, social worker, dietitian, physical therapist, occupational therapist, recreational therapist, pharmacist, dental assistant, and others, work together to coordinate and deliver all of a participant’s health and care needs. In addition to medical care, PACE provides transportation to and from a local PACE site where participants enjoy the benefits of socialization and companionship while accessing medical care services. PACE home care coordinators visit the homes of participants to assess the need for home modifications to ensure the participants can thrive in a safe environment.

Dr. Brendan Flynn joined Blue Ridge Hospice in 2015 serving as Medical Director. Originally trained in Family Medicine, Dr. Flynn has 17 years in the field of hospice and palliative care, having worked with highly regarded not-for-profit hospices in Florida and Colorado prior to coming to Virginia. He is board certified in Family Medicine as well as Hospice and Palliative Medicine. He has gained fellowship status with the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine and is a certified Hospice Medical Director.

Jennifer Martin has held every possible role a nurse could fill during her 24-year career at Blue Ridge Hospice. She has served as Chief Clinical Officer for the past four years and has been responsible for management of the Blue Ridge Hospice Inpatient Care Center, the on-call teams, and Clinical Marketing in addition to all three Blue Ridge Hospice patient care teams. Under her leadership, Blue Ridge Hospice has consistently scored among the highest in Virginia on Medicare’s hospice quality ratings.

Dr. Julie Landrio has served as a staff physician at Blue Ridge Hospice since 2018. She had been a well-established Internal Medicine physician, providing decades of care to patients in the Winchester area. She is a certified Hospice Medical Director and is board certified in Internal Medicine. In her new role as Medical Director, Dr. Landrio will provide oversight of Blue Ridge Hospice’s patient care teams and continue to provide direct patient care.