Darlene Vandekamp, RN
I have worked as a Registered Nurse since graduating from the University of Lethbridge with a Bachelors of Science in Nursing degree in May 2012. I began my career with Alberta Health Services in senior care, community care, palliative home care, and various areas of the Barrhead and Westlock Healthcare Centres, until transitioning to private nursing care in May 2017 by co-founding Heritage Home Health Ltd.
My experience in both rural and urban nursing settings developed into a desire to improve accessibility by providing the same service and support options to those in rural areas as are often available to city residents. Growing up in small communities myself and witnessing the importance of these communities with the strengths and supports they offer, I felt driven to provide care that did not require people living rurally to be separated from their communities, churches, families, friends, etc. in order to access the health services they needed. This grew into a passion for better healthy home living options and community support in rural areas.
I have been working as a Health Care Aide in long term care, Barrhead and Westlock Healthcare Centres, and private service delivery since 2012, with prior experience in disability care.
Having also grown up in a small community and now witnessing many patients struggle to find in-home care to prevent or shorten hospital stays, premature admission to senior’s homes, or even separation from family members, I was moved to create a new service to provide options for seniors and others who wish to remain or recover at home.
After working at Barrhead Healthcare Centre together for two and a half years, a chance discussion revealed a shared interest and passion for increasing local capacity to provide home support and allow patients to remain in their communities with their loved ones, leading to the development of Heritage Home Health Ltd.