_____________^ ______________ ________________ ' ___\_\\\ L ^— HOUSTON VOICE
LOCcll LliG :
People who care for their family
is there for
By BINNIE FISHER
When Bill Clevenger decided to open a
home health care service a year and a
half ago, he looked for office space in
Montrose because as he sees it, his mis
sion is family caring for family
He had been here before with a home
health care agency, in the early 1980s
when people with AIDS saw before them
a debilitating life that most likely would
end in a painful death.
"We had our hands full back then," he
said. "I lost a lot of good friends to the
Located then at 3400 Montrose,
Clevenger said, his business had few
avenues to which it could turn in order to
help clients. He and his patients had to
wait for services like the Assistance
Fund, the Montrose Clinic, Bering
Omega Services and others to be born
and to grow."
In 2005, he said, the needs are different. More importantly, the infrastructure
is there now to help those in need.
Although now as then, his agency is
a business, Clevenger said he and his
staff do whatever is needed whenever
someone calls. It may be a matter of
referring them to a nonprofit agency
that can help.
"We just helped a guy last week get
into the Bering Omega hospice program," he said. "We're real good at taking somebody and finding out what
resources are available out there. We're
pretty good at knowing who's out there
and whether the Assistance Fund or the
Montrose Clinic or another organization
can help someone."
With a staff of eight nurses, 20 home
health care aids and five people staffing
the office, Clevenger said, the service is
equipped to take care of most needs.
Registered nurse Bill Clevenger (far right) Is the owner of STAT Care Home Health Care, Inc. He is pictured
with office staff (from right) Sarah Morris, Charles Berger and Roger Reilgelman. (Photo by Dalton DeHart)
ft MORE INFO
STAT Home Health Care, Inc.
711 Hyde Park Blvd.
In most cases, he said, "People just
need a little bit of help so they can stay
When new clients call, Clevenger said,
the staff at STAT try first to determine
what it is they need. If it appears that
they may need home health care, an
assessment is scheduled.
A home visit is made, and the patient's
needs are assessed. "We work with their
doctor to make sure they are getting their
needs met," he said.
Though not all of his clients are AIDS
patients, Clevenger noted that he has a
working relationship with most of the
AIDS physicians in Houston.
"We take care of all segments of the
population without any consideration of
age, race or nationality," he said.
Needs of clients range from someone to prepare lunch and help the client
bathe and dress for the day to a nurse
who can administer medications to a
trained professional to provide physical therapy.
Although his clients live throughout
Harris County, Clevenger said, he keeps
his center of operation in Montrose
because it is centrally located.
"We're five minutes from the Medical
Center," he said.
As a Medicare certified agency,
Clevenger said, "We work with Medicare
or private insurance."
Recently, Clevenger said, a state survey of the agency found no deficiencies.
In addition, he said, the agency was
praised for having its records readily
available and in good order on computer.
The agency operates as closely as possible to paperless. Everything is on computer, which doctors seem to appreciate.
"We're very automated," he said. "We
have the capability of emailing records
directly to the doctor. Technically, we
have the people in the office who can
write the programs."
When he looked for office space to
open a 21st Century version of the home
health care service he operated in the
1980s, Clevenger said, he decided to come
down from the upper floors of an office
building. Instead of office space, he went
for "home space."
The agency is located in a house at 711
Hyde Park, behind what once was the
ft WILLIAM J.
Education: Bachelor of Science in Nursing
from University of Houston
Home: Spring Branch
Occupation: Registered Nurse/Owner of STAT
Home Health Care, Inc.
Relationship Status: Partner to Edward Rivera
Pets: German Shepherd named Herra
"It's homey," he said. "We sit on the
porch and have our coffee."
The kitchen and den are like the
kitchen and den in any other house, complete with cereal boxes and a kitchen table.
"We're like a big family," Clevenger said.
"The staff and I go out to a movie every
other week. We go out to eat together."
Since he works seven days a week,
Clevenger said, working in a house
makes it seem less like work.
Clevenger said STAT supports gay
causes that make life better for others.
"We really do care about our community," he said. "We're a gay-owned and
operated company. That's just us."