My Path to Opening KAWARTHA Home & Health Care Services.
by Patti Clancy, RPN
I entered a nursing program in Peterborough, Ontario at the age of 16. During my placement I quit nursing school thinking this was not for me and my nursing instructors called me back in and said I was a natural nurse. I graduated in 1978 as a Registered Nursing Assistant (RNA) and worked in many different types of health care jobs: in long-term care, doctor’s receptionist, homecare coordinator and a chiropractor assistant. I continued to take-part time courses from Trent University and Sir Sandford Fleming College, and continued to work as an RNA.
I took a break from nursing in 2002 due to personal reasons and as soon as I could resume my career, I contacted the College of Nurses of Ontario. I started to reinstate with the College of Nurses of Ontario and I will be forever grateful, for I had such a learning curve from my RNA in 1978 to a Registered Practical Nurse (RPN) in 2014. I took many online courses and moved to Toronto in 2012 to do my clinical in Bridgepoint Health Hospital in Toronto (Medical Rehabilitation and Palliative Care) and finished with my consolidation in Ontario Shores in Whitby (Forensic Assessment Unit). Once again I was told by my nursing instructors I was a natural nurse.
In my younger days of nursing I began working in a homecare agency as a coordinator, which began in one of the owners’ bedrooms that was turned into an office; the business boomed. I loved my job and always wanted to open my own homecare agency. I was a single mom and after both my children were out of the home and educated (daughter a registered nurse, son a paramedic) and both married with children I decided it was Mom’s turn.
I opened AGAPE CAREGIVER RELIEF INC. on July 31, 2015. In 2018 I expanded the company to include Nursing and facility staffing relief and changed the company name and brand to KAWARTHA HOME & HEALTH CARE SERVICES.
Home care agency offers compassion and support from medically trained workers
You’d be hard pressed to find someone in Peterborough and the Kawarthas who’s more passionate about caring for our vulnerable seniors populations than Patti Clancy.
Clancy greets Connected to Business with a hug, apologizing as she does that she’s “a hugger.” She’s overcome with gratitude that people are starting to recognize her business, Kawartha Home and Health Care Services, because she’s been fighting so hard to change an industry she says lacks the ability to properly care for those in need.
“I would have to say, from my heart and soul, that we are the best home care in the Kawarthas,” she says. “We really care about our people… I’m very protective of the vulnerable.”
She’s been a nurse for more than 40 years and decided five years ago to go out on her own with her own home care agency.
Back then it was just Clancy. She says a “higher power” showed her what it's like to be a full time caregiver. She came close to burning out with no regulated hours. She was just trying to help as many people as possible.
“I ran every department,” she says. She compares her first year as an independent business owner and caregiver to the life of someone who might be a full time caregiver to his or her spouse at home. She says full time caregivers don’t get a break, they don’t get to leave at the end of the day and they don’t get paid.
Since then, Kawartha Home and Health Care Services has grown to have more than 50 staff members, including home support workers, personal support workers, developmental and social service workers, registered nurses, registered practical nurses and more.
“We have a beautiful office. There’s nothing but laughter and love and I wouldn’t have it any other way,” Clancy says. Her daughter, Krista, also a registered nurse, and son, Joe, a paramedic with the city, are members of her after hours staff. She says Kawartha Home and Health Care Services is her legacy and she hopes her children will continue it with similar passion when she retires.
Clancy says she wants affordable, reliable health care for all. She says her team will make sure you are accessing all government services available to support you and your loved ones, and consider your financial needs to ensure you are getting the best care.
“We provide a holistic, family-centred approach to care,” says manager David Edwards, also a registered nurse.
“Everyone puts on their scrubs and goes to work,” says Clancy. “This is a dream come true for me. I’m so grateful we’ve grown to the point where I can have help.”
For more information on Kawartha Home and Health Care Services you can visit kawarthahomehealthcare.com. There you’ll find a full list of their services.
You can also call 705-742-8317 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.