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Apprenticeships in SC

“Within reason, I want the most well-educated workforce in long-term care”.  Those words although paraphrased, summarize the marching orders given to me by our founder, Scott Middleton.  Having worked in higher education my entire life, coupled with a cognate in gerontology in my doctoral program, I set about putting together what is now known as LTC University.

            Over the years, LTCU (which began as Agape University) has evolved into the dynamic, interactive learning management system we see today.  Starting with two student interns – Ben Finley and Jackie Keefe, we began to put together courses that individuals could access and learn from while in the employment of our companies.  Today, with over 1000 courses online – all of which were developed by employees and content area experts, we are a robust and dynamic learning enterprise, still focused on having the most “well-educated workforce in the industry”. 

            LTCU/Agape University has always been a leader in innovation and creativity.  In fact, Agape Senior and Agape Hospice were the FIRST health-care-related businesses in South Carolina to put together a registered apprenticeship program for its employees.  What we saw from the beginning of this innovative program is that employees were much more knowledgeable, better equipped to handle difficult situations and were more invested in the company after completing the program.  We have grown this model so that today, our company has over 14 Registered Apprenticeship programs and there is an apprenticeship program for every employee of all of our businesses.  In fact, if one wants a pay raise, the completion of a registered apprenticeship program is the only way an increase is earned (see your local HR rep for information). 

            We have been recognized nationally and internationally for our work in Apprenticeship programs.  In fact, we were even listed as a case study in a recently released book on HR issues in higher education.  If you are interested in reading the chapter, please let me know and I will send you a word document.

            So, get involved in an Apprenticeship program, log into our online learning management system and begin to enjoy the knowledge that has been created just for you – the most well-educated workforce in the industry!  If interested in more information, please contact Jackie Keefe, 803-207-8153.

Happy Learning!
Jimmie Williamson

SC House Calls Brings Care Home by The Charleston Chronicle

August 12, 2018: “SC House Calls understands a person’s home is defined as where they reside, whether that is a Skilled Facility, Assisted Living, Independent Living or private residence. SC House Calls can bridge the gap in care after a hospitalization, acute illness or injury, and in most cases we will see the patient earlier and reduce their chances for re-hospitalization. Additionally, SC House Calls coordinates all healthcare services with the patient’s primary care physician until such time as he/she can return to normal scheduled office visits,” provided by The Charleston Chronicle. To read more about what The Charleston Chronicle says about SC House Calls, please see the SC House Calls Brings Care Home press release.

Welcome To Our New Site!

SC House Calls’ dedication to consistent, high quality care with a personal touch led to the creation of our new website. Our custom designed, responsive website was created to allow you to effortlessly navigate through all of our services so you can easily find the service you need from any device.

Our team shares a passion for helping seniors find their independence while meeting their health needs with top-notch care. We understand what a big step the move to assisted living is, which is why it is so important to us that you have the chance to meet our dedicated team of doctors. On our
new website you can browse through their bios so you can get to know your caregiver. The patient portal lets you access every facet of your account
in a user friendly way. With the addition of our new website, we are able to provide the highest level of customer service, share other customers’
experiences and even request an appointment from the touch of a finger.

Take a minute to look around and check out what SC House Calls has to offer. Bookmark our page or give us a call to improve your quality of life!


Apprenticeship Carolina Program

Join us in celebrating 10 years of success through our Apprenticeship Carolina Program! Apprenticeship Carolina, a division of the SC Technical College
System, works with SC House Calls to ensure access to the information and technical assistance needed to create demand driven Department of Labor
Registered Apprenticeship Programs. Our 10 year partnership has led to the implementation of 13 active registered apprenticeship programs.

SC House Calls is dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in providing the best care possible to the residents of South Carolina through our integrated healthcare
services. We believe that education and training provided to our employees are a pivotal part of achieving this goal. A highly trained and highly motivated
workforce are key elements to SC House Calls success.

Want more information on the Apprenticeship Program?


Making Informed Decisions In Advanced Care Planning

Connecting patients with SC House Calls clinicians affords individuals the opportunity to make informed decisions & execute advanced care planning thus reducing pointless and ineffective surgical interventions. SC House Calls is an active partner with patients, families and healthcare facilities to ensure the best options are presented.

Read more


4 Tips for Communicating with Progressing Dementia Patients

If a loved one has dementia they will begin to show signs their cognitive abilities getting worse over time. Persons exhibiting dementia will show signs of memory loss, confusion, lack of attentiveness and a difficulty in communication. Dementia is frightening for those who experience the symptoms; however, communicating with sufferers can be frustrating for caretakers who need to communicate important matters to the afflicted or want to express their concern and compassion.

There are ways to make communicating with individuals with dementia easier and more effective. Symptoms will progress with each stage.

Early Stage Dementia

Those with mild dementia are still able to engage in conversation as usual. They may show signs of forgetfulness, show difficulty remembering names or words or repeat things they’ve said already.

  • Be patient with individuals even though they may appear to have the normal abilities of someone their age.
  • Ask direct questions regarding their needs or wants instead of relying on the opinion of other observers or family members.
  • Make sure to include them in group activities or conversations.
  • Refrain from making assumptions about their ability to communicate.

Mid Stage Dementia

They will face greater challenges in communicating their needs to others. Moderate dementia can be a long road towards severe dementia and during this
time, the symptoms will intensify. Caretakers should be flexible and attentive in their communication strategies and should be extremely patient. Individuals
will need time to express themselves completely. They will be searching for the right words and may grow frustrated. They may be easily distracted.

  • Try to find time to communicate with them when you are not multitasking and they are not distracted.
  • Use active listening. Repeat what the person says back to them if you are unsure and give them an opportunity to either confirm or correct what they
  • Speak clearly in short bursts of information. Give them time to acknowledge the understanding of one item before moving on to the next.
  • If there is confusion on their part, you can supplement your statements with visual clues or non-verbal communication strategies.

Late Stage Dementia

Individuals may only be able to communicate non-verbally. While they may still understand what you say, they may not be able to respond as they would have
in years prior.

  • Always speak to them face-to-face if possible. If they are seated, lower your face to get on their level.
  • Always identify yourself when you start a conversation.
  • Ask them to point, gesture or use other non-verbal methods to answer a question or express a desire.
  • Observe their emotional reaction for clues on their needs or how they are doing in the moment.

Caring for someone with progressing dementia can be a difficult time, with many unanswered questions. SC House Calls
can help guide you through this process. Feel free to reach out to our team at 803-491-0909 with questions or healthcare needs.


5 Advantages of Choosing SC House Calls as Your Clinical Care Partner

Today’s healthcare professionals know the everyday challenges of meeting the needs of patients and residents while keeping cost down and maintaining a
stable community for all those under their long-term care.

Those healthcare professionals also know long-term healthcare within assisted living and skilled nursing facilities has been affected by constant changes in the clinical complexity of patients,
demographics, finances, and shifts in the scope of care in various settings.

Keeping this in mind, SC House Calls has made it a priority to help fulfill residents and patients desire to live as independently as possible, for as long as possible, while keeping the stress of off-site treatments,
medications, and hospital admissions to a minimum.

Benefits of SC House Calls Services for Residents, Families, and Our Partners:

Hassle-Free On-Site Services

  • Over the years, long-term stay patients have increased in medical complexity and acuity as a result of many being discharged from the hospital ‘sicker and quicker’. Both of these imperatives have
    resulted in an increased need for highly trained and committed healthcare practitioners willing to provide care on-site to nursing facility residents.

    SC House Calls provides hassle-free visits which eliminate extensive waiting time and the need for off-site transportation, making the patients and care givers experience as simple as possible. In addition, on-site services offer increased preventive care, screening and early detection decreasing further development of patients’ conditions and healthcare costs for the facility.

Comprehensive Patient-Centered Care

  • Good communication with patients, family members and other care professionals is crucial to meeting individuals’ immediate and longer-term care needs.In recognition of the increased need of physician services for skilled nursing facility residents and the vital role that physicians must play in both providing and overseeing care, SC House Calls has worked hard to develop structures and processes that enable a more focused and dedicated patient care. SC House Calls works closely with all involved professionals to ensure that an integrated care management system is in place to meet these needs, whether in either a residential facility or, ideally, the patient’s home.

Simple, Easy Billing

  • Effective and accurate billing is a complex issue in healthcare. This is something that facilities often struggle with due to the time and expertise

    SC House Calls provides full billing services for Medicare and most private insurances with no additional costs, other than customary deductibles and copays.
    Our team of professionals ease the billing process in order to meet financial needs.

Quality Pro-Active Care

  • While hospital admissions are sometimes unavoidable, they can be very distressing for patients and disruptive to other residents and care providers.
    Independence is crucial not just for individuals’ health, but also for the well-being of the whole community.

    SC House Calls believes pro-active care is always preferable to reactive, and regular home or facility visits by SC House Calls’ highly experienced doctors, nurses and
    other specialists can be a great saver of time and stress for patients, residents, and families.

Value-Added Services

  • Comprehensive communication is one of the most important tools for providing great patient care, and we believe it is just as important to us as it
    is to patients and residents.

    To ensure excellent service, we’re on call 24/7 through our Care Call Center where a team of medical professionals are ready to assist patients with
    any questions and concerns. In addition, our online Patient Portal enables easy, remote access to care programs and records. As a clinical care
    partner, we strive to improve patient satisfaction by being the line of communication in a time of need.

SC House Calls Physician Services include skilled nursing facilities, assisted living,
palliative care, and care management. We work
to provide quality care to all involved, improving the overall wellness of residents.

For more information about how SC House Calls can help you, please call us at (800) 491-0909 or contact us online here.


5 Advantages of Having Specialized Clinicians at Your Skilled Nursing Facility

Patients in skilled nursing facilities and assisted living communities are often those with the most complex medical needs. Therefore, they can benefit
most from readily available professional care. If your skilled nursing facility (SNF) regularly has specialized physicians, nurse practitioners, or
other skilled clinicians on site, it can provide significant benefits to patient’s families.

These are five of the most common benefits of having specialized clinicians on site:

1.Less Re-Hospitalization

Multiple studies indicate patients are less likely to require re-hospitalization when care by providers is consistently available at the skilled nursing
facility. Patients receive better overall care and often have better outcomes because providers at an SNF see them frequently and consistently. On
average, providers should see a patient 1-2 times per month, however, when patient first arrives, the visits should be more frequent, 2-3 times per

2.Continuity of Care
Providers develop personal relationships with their patients. A patient will likely see a different emergency room doctor with each visit to a hospital.
The provider for the skilled nursing facility will come to know a patient’s short-term and long-term medical history to ensure overall health strategies
are achieved.

3.More Proactive Care
Providers with regular contact with patients can better anticipate changes in health and more quickly take preemptive measures.

4.Peace of mind
Patients and their families can depend on a high level of care that is regularly available. That confidence extends to SNF management. Many common healthcare
issues, that would otherwise require transporting patients to a hospital or clinic, can be addressed at the facility.

5.Increased Value
Patients and families will see a greater value in skilled nursing facilities with specialized providers readily available. This strengthens the brand image
of the SNF, making it more valuable to potential patients and families.

Please contact SC House Calls if your Skilled Nursing Facility is ready to explore the right specialized provider for your SNF.


5 Tactics to Ensure a Successful Progression of Care After Hospital Discharge

When an individual leaves a hospital, he or she is rarely “healthy” or well enough to be expected to fully maintain their healthcare needs on their own.

There are numerous risks associated with ineffective care transition from a hospital to a home or a hospital to a retirement community. Often, ineffective transitions lead to hospital readmission. To minimize this, consider the value of in-home physician care.

In-Home Physician Care Reduces Complications After Discharge

In-home physician care can offer a number of clear benefits to all involved, especially the patient, and can help ensure a successful progression of care after leaving the hospital. To facilitate this, consider these tactics:

1. Minimize the need to go back and forth to doctor’s appointments
After a hospital admission, trips to see a doctor become more frequent, especially in the days and weeks after discharge. Allowing an in-home physician to handle these appointments in-house reduces strain and risks of falls or further complications.

2. Ensure more on-hands care to reduce future stays

With an in-home physician visit, the individual gets routine care more frequently and even sooner after a hospital stay. This can correct concerns or provide enhanced support at home before the condition worsens and warrants a new admission.

3. Minimize stress on the patient and family with more consistent care

With the utilization of an in-house physician, the patient and the family gain some level of confidence. Instead of worrying and stressing over having to meet care guidelines in a home setting, they gain more hands-on support and guidance. This gives them confidence and can reduce problems in a real-time scenario.

4. Create a smooth transition for all involved

It is also important to ensure caregivers can provide the level of care necessary after a new admission and discharge. This may include more responsibilities, medication management, or wound care. It becomes essential to ensure caregivers understand new changes.

5. Reduce emergency room stressors

The fear of being in an unfamiliar environment, dealing with infections from these high-risk areas, and the enhanced risk of falls all make ER visits less beneficial. With a physician’s visit in-home, it is less likely such visits are necessary. As such, the patient remains healthy longer.

The use of an in-house physician minimizes risks and improves outcomes while helping ensure the patient is given the level of care necessary. SC House Calls’ patient-focused, care management program provides a personalized approach to managing each patient’s experience, giving patients and partners better post-hospital results.

To find out more about how SC House Calls can help you, contact us today!


LTC Health Solutions Launches SC House Calls

COLUMBIA, SC – On July 15, 2018, LTC Health Solutions launched SC House Calls, a new in-home physician service which includes nurse practitioners across the state. With over 100 providers and a 24-7 call center manned by professional medical personnel, SC House Calls brings home-based palliative care and home-based primary care directly to the patient. In addition, LTC Health Solutions manages seven traditional primary care clinics branded as Main Street Physicians.

SC House Calls understands a person’s home is defined as where they reside, whether that is a Skilled Facility, Assisted Living, Independent Living or private residence. SC House Calls can bridge the gap in care after a hospitalization, acute illness or injury, and in most cases we will see the patient earlier and reduce their chances for re-hospitalization. Additionally, SC House Calls coordinates all healthcare services with the patient’s primary care physician until such time as he/she can return to normal scheduled office visits.

Theresa Younis, President, stated “Studies have proven that seniors who have access to consistent managed health care, like the services provided through SC House Calls, can significantly reduce their chances of hospitalization. Our Senior communities across the state who partner with SC House Calls add value for their residents by providing access to on-site physician care and also gain an additional benefit by protecting and maintaining an overall healthier census.”

According to Will Stillinger, VP of Physician Services, “SC House Calls is proactive rather than reactive healthcare and we believe this solution is especially impactful in our rural and underserved communities where regular access to providers should lead to better outcomes and a better quality of life for the residents.”

SC House Calls believes that with our rapidly aging population, the emergence of new technologies and smart scheduling solutions, home-based primary care will become the norm rather than the exception.


How SC House Calls Can Support Your Facility

Patients in skilled nursing facilities and assisted living communities are often those with the most complex medical needs. Therefore, they can benefit
most from readily available professional care. If your skilled nursing facility (SNF) regularly has specialized physicians, nurse practitioners, or
other skilled clinicians on site, it can provide significant benefits to patient’s families.

Advantages For Your Campus

Nursing facility care has been changing over the last 10 years to more long-term care patients with increased complexity. These changes have resulted in
an increased need for highly trained, committed, and available health care practitioners. But exactly how do we help you keep your facility operating
as efficiently as possible?

  • Specialized clinicians on your campus
  • Reduce hospitalizations and keep your census stable
  • Obtain better patient outcomes
  • Reduce medication costs
  • Empowerment to operate above DHEC standards
  • Reduce lost staff time and pay
  • Residents will be staying with you longer

By taking advantage of the benefits SC House Calls can offer, you will be able to add value to your campus and ensure quality care for your patients.

If you’re interested in learning more about how our services can benefit your facility, please contact us today!


How Pro-Active Medicine Could Mean the Difference During the Holidays

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. This saying certainly applies to the holidays, when people tend to feel more under the weather, follow
their diets less strictly, get less sleep, and take on more activity than they should. For many people, especially those without family nearby, holidays
can be a time of greater anxiety, loneliness, depression, and stress. All of these things can lead to a greater need for medical care during the holidays.

Here are some of the ways that pro-active medicine can make a difference for patients and their families this holiday season:

  • More frequent visits: During the holiday season, illnesses like the cold and flu are making their rounds while immune systems are
    more taxed by lack of sleep, stress, changes in routine, and many other factors.

    This is why it is important to increase doctor visits around the holiday season to make sure patients are receiving quality and timely care when
    needed to ensure they are able to enjoy these good times.

  • Better health management: When patients have better access to care, their health begins to improve, which has a ripple effect on their
    overall wellness.

    Both patients and caregivers can experience peace of mind knowing that help is readily available and their patients are getting the comprehensive
    care they deserve.

  • More time with loved ones: No one wants to spend the holidays in hospital due to lack of proactive care.With high-quality, dedicated medical care, patients can truly enjoy the holidays, time with loved ones, and better health.

With skilled nurses and practitioners immediately available, families can have peace of mind knowing the loved ones they care for can enjoy the holidays
with good health, comfort, and plenty of reasons to celebrate.

At SC House Calls, we go out of our way to see patients wherever they are – in nursing homes, independent living facilities, and
even their own homes. Reach out to us to find more about the services we offer, including established on-site services for
skilled nursing and assisted living facilities to provide routine care.

3 Ways On-Site Nurse Practitioners Can Give Your Assisted Living Patients Peace of Mind

People who choose assisted living communities are seeking ways to maintain their independence as long as possible while having access to necessary assistance to maintain optimal health and wellness.

Facilities that provide on-site nurse practitioners give their residents many benefits that help them preserve their independence even longer. These are a few of the ways on-site nurse practitioners can give your South Carolina assisted living patients greater peace of mind.

1. Ensures Greater Continuum of Care

Because on-site nurse practitioners have the time to get to know your residents and their healthcare needs on a more intimate basis than many clinical settings allow, it offers them the opportunity to provide more comprehensive services to their patients.

This means your residents are getting the highest possible quality of care from providers who understand the full scope of their needs.

The most important way this benefits your assisted living patients, though, is the peace of mind they experience by seeing a familiar face when they are experiencing frightening symptoms or medical emergencies. Our on-site nurse practitioners build relationships with your patients, so they can feel confident in the care they’re receiving.

2. Able to Visit Patients in their Home Environments

Because patients live in assisted living facilities, on-site nurse practitioners are able to make rounds from one patient to the next, seeing them in their home environments. It puts patients more at ease than clinical environments allow and eliminates the need for them to travel or go out into the elements to make their appointments.

This results in fewer missed or skipped appointments and helps them receive a more consistent quality of care as their health care needs change. It also means that they when patients aren’t feeling well, care comes to them. They don’t even need to get out of bed.

3. Easy Billing

Perhaps one of the biggest concerns assisted living patients have is complex billing that makes it nearly impossible to understand. More to the point, they fear billing that may cause hassles with their insurance providers.

SC House Calls accepts a wide range of health insurance programs and offers the added courtesy of filing claims with primary and secondary insurers for our patients.

SC House Calls wants to be your partner in providing outstanding care to the residents of your assisted living community. Contact us today to learn more about the many benefits available to you for making SC House Calls your clinical care partner.

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