Visiting Nurse Association of Ambler and Vicinity records
Held at: University of Pennsylvania: Barbara Bates Center for the Study of The History of Nursing [Contact Us]Claire Fagin Hall, 418 Curie Boulevard, Floor 2U, Philadelphia, PA, 19104-4217
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Pennsylvania: Barbara Bates Center for the Study of The History of Nursing. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.
Overview and metadata sections
The Visiting Nurse Association of Ambler and Vicinity was formally established in 1923 and incorporated in 1930 under the name of the North Penn Community Center. In 1954, it officially changed its name to the North Penn Visiting Nurse Association, and in July 1976, changed again to the Visiting Nurse Association of Ambler and Vicinity. In 1984, it merged into the Visiting Nurse Association of Eastern Montgomery County (See collection MC 25).
Throughout its time, the association addressed many local health issues. The agency originated in the Red Cross home service branch in Ambler. During its establishment, it cared for discharged soldiers and their dependents in 1918. As the wartime activities ended, interest in providing services to civilian cases developed. Mrs. George J. Cooke was appointed to study the situation and report to the Red Cross committee. In 1919, a social worker was engaged. In October 1920, the Colony Club of Ambler, at Mrs. Cooke's request, decided to join the Red Cross Committee in giving the newly formed service to the community. The first nurse was engaged in 1921. Two more were employed the next year. In 1923, baby clinics were started in three localities. The Red Cross Roll Call, the work of the Needlework Guild, and the Sale of Tuberculosis Seals also took place at the center. During the Depression years, the center engaged in relief work, dispensing aid to the unemployed.
Later, in 1941, Miss Mae Garrett was appointed director, and she stressed functions of public health nursing such as good nursing care, health instruction, referral for families with special problems, and assistance in the planning of a community health program. In April 1941, 169 patients were aided in an influenza epidemic. Maternity ward patients were referred to the center. Health lectures were given. Pre-school examinations and tuberculosis programs continued. The staff was increased to four nurses. Health supervision was carried on in seven area schools. In 1943, over 5,000 nursing visits were made. In 1947, the child health clinic was re-established and included well-baby and dental clinics. In 1955, the agency assisted in a program of Salk polio immunizations at a local school. The operations of the association changed even further with the advent of Medicare in 1966, especially in the policies, procedures, certifications, and other aspects of the agency.
In early years, funds were raised through an annual drive, rummage sales, and Salvage Shop. The agency's record of receiving funds from the Community Chest (the United Fund, and later the United Way of Philadelphia) started in early 1950's. Since 1955, appropriations have also been received from the townships and boroughs the agency serves as well as from the county. Other sources of income are the Department of Public Welfare, the American Cancer Society, the Veteran Administration, Blue Cross, and Medicare.
The collection consists of a comprehensive variety of records documenting the development of the suburban visiting nurse association. Besides a large quantity of formal records (Board and committee records), it also contains all kinds of administration files (such as agreements, correspondence, policy manuals), financial file, and files of other organizations. Also included are some photographs and nine well-kept scrapbooks (mostly of newsclippings).
Gift of Marilyn Harris, 1991-1992.
- Visiting Nurse Association of Ambler and Vicinity.
- Visiting Nurse Association of Eastern Montgomery County (Pa.).
- University of Pennsylvania: Barbara Bates Center for the Study of The History of Nursing
- Finding Aid Author
- Finding aid prepared by Center staff, updated by Bethany Myers
- This collection was processed with funds provided by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission as part of the Nursing History Processing and Cataloging Project.
- Access Restrictions
This collection is unrestricted.
- Use Restrictions
Copyright restrictions may apply. Please contact the Center with requests for copying and for authorization to publish, quote or reproduce the material.
This series consists mainly of history of the agency, its bylaws, and Board minutes from 1925 to 1985.
Included in this series are records of all committees, mostly minutes, and committee manuals.
This series contains minutes of all kinds of staff meetings, agreements and contracts, correspondence, policy manuals, and files documenting various kinds of programs and activities.
This series consists of budgets, annual financial statements, ledgers, etc.
This series contains brochures, news clippings and other miscellaneous subject files.
Included in this series are files of all organizatinos that had business with the agency. The United Way of Philadelphia and Vicinity and the Natinoal League for Nursing are the two major ones. The series is arranged alphabetically by the names of the organizations.
Photographs contained in this series have initially been sorted into two folders. They document all kinds of services provided by the agency.Physical Description
This series consists of nine scrapbooks, six of which are of newsclippings from 1941 to 1983, and the remaining three are samples of printing matters and other miscellaneous items.