Rita Pridemore’s career has been shaped by two main principles. First — to collaborate with our clients, their families and other health care providers to ensure each client receives the highest quality care possible in the communities we serve. Second Pridemore strongly believes that our goal is to enrich the lives of those we serve by keeping them comfortable, secure and where they want to be, at home “home is where the heart is.”
As president and CEO of Vistelan Healthcare in Summerville, she understands seniors want to age in place, staying within the comfort and familiarity of their residence.
Vistelan caregivers help clients do this by offering companion services, transportation to and from Drs. appointments, church, grocery store, medication reminders, baths and assistance with activities of daily living.
Pridemore started Vistelan Healthcare four years ago but her idea for it came up much earlier in her career when she worked as a registered nurse. She noticed many of her clients went home from a hospital stay only to be readmitted in a few days. due to not understanding discharge plans, having the right medication or understanding how to take medication.
“I just kept thinking, what are we missing?” Pridemore said. She soon learned it was impossible for some patients to manage their medications, they either forgot completely or took medication inconsistently. Other patients had trouble maintaining a balanced or prescribed diet because they needed help with meal preparation and other activities of daily living.
Pridemore said she realized people just needed a helping hand. Her 30 plus years of experience in healthcare primed her for starting Vistelan Healthcare in 2014. Hers was one of the first in home care agencies in the state to be licensed. Pridemore describes the process as “lengthy but very needed .” She knew the policies and procedures mandated by the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control. She jumped for the opportunity to get licensed even before it was required because she wanted Vistelan Healthcare to provide a higher level of care.
Pridemore meets with each and every Vistelan client so she can assess and individualize their plan of care. It also allows her to determine the best Caregiver to meet the client needs. The workload keeps her busy but she is passionate about providing high quality care. She oversees about 60 employees serving Charleston, Dorchester, Berkley and Colleton counties.
Most of the clients are in their late seventies but a few are over 100, one client is 103. Pridemore said at that age, a person should be able to live the life they want by staying at their home of choice. We are committed to making this happen.
Having someone available to keep a client comfortable by assisting with cooking, cleaning and medication management also takes the burden off of family members.
“It allows the family to be a family and not the caregiver,” Pridemore said. Our caregivers provide compassionate care that supports the unique needs of our clients through all stages of life journey.
To learn more about Vistelan Healthcare, please visit Vistelan.com.