Local long-term care centers under new management

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Three Flathead County long-term care centers are now under new operational ownership.

Heritage Place and WEL-Life Assisted Living, both of Kalispell and Lake View Care Center of Bigfork, previously were operated by Welcov Healthcare of Minnesota, but are now under Lantis Enterprise management, headquartered in South Dakota, according to a press release.

“We know transitions of this magnitude can be challenging. We appreciate the support of all involved,” Wendy Soulek, chief executive officer of Lantis Enterprise, said in the press release. “The Heritage Place, Lake View Care Center, and WEL-Life at Kalispell teams and our consulting team look forward to serving the residents, families and Kalispell and Flathead Valley community for years to come.”

Lantis Enterprised managed the facilities prior to Welcov taking over in 2012. According to Tricia Dortch, executive director at WEL-Life Kalispell, Lantis had transferred operational ownership to Welcov after the company’s founder, Will Lantis, passed away unexpectedly and the responsibility of the company fell to his children.

Dortch said the children wanted time to grieve for their father and wanted to educate themselves on how to best run the business, hence the five-year gap in Lantis management.

Operational ownership of the three Flathead County facilitiies was officially transferred back to Lantis on Aug. 1, 2018.

Dortch, who has been with WEL-Life for 12 years, said the transition back to original management has been “a very positive thing” and the organizations are “pleased to have that warm family spirit” in charge of operations again.

The flip-flop of management between Welcov and Lantis has been reported in multiple states.

According to a June 2018 article in the Helena Independent Record, Lantis Enterprises announced it would resume control over facilities it had temporarily leased to Welcov in 2012.

In July 2018 the Rapid City Journal reported Lantis had resumed operations over multiple nursing facilities in Nebraska, Iowa, South Dakota and Montana. The properties had been operated by Welcov since 2012, but prior to Welcov fell under Lantis ownership as well.

Lantis Enterprises manages more than three dozen long-term care, assisted living and home-health facilities across multiple states.

The company’s website touts “Western hospitality with a smile” with a mission statement that reads “we are a family-oriented health-care provider, dedicated to excellence, whose mission is to enhance the lives of those we serve by providing quality care with respect, dignity and kindness.”

Reporter Kianna Gardner can be reached at 758-4439 or kgardner@dailyinterlake.com

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