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Kissito will operate a Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly and offer comprehensive long-term services to Medicare and Medicaid enrollees.
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
A nonprofit health care group has received federal approval to run a program in the Roanoke and New River valleys aimed at offering affordable ways for the elderly to stay out of nursing homes.
Kissito Healthcare will operate a Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly, also known as a PACE center.
The first of its kind for the region, the program will offer comprehensive long-term services to Medicare and Medicaid enrollees, allowing them to receive care while continuing to live at home.
“It’s a really exciting program that enables senior citizens to live in the community, as opposed to being placed in a nursing home,” said Sean Pressman, program director of the new Roanoke County-based PACE center.
There are 90 such centers in the United States, and approval from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services was a three-year process.
The program will serve about 800 people from Bedford to Blacksburg when it reaches full capacity in about 10 years, Pressman said.
A key part of the operation will be adult day centers and clinics like the one scheduled to open Nov. 1 at Valleypointe business park in Roanoke County.
The center will have a team including a physician, occupational and physical therapists, nurses and other staffers. Kissito will offer transportation for PACE participants to get to and from the center.
About 30 people will work at the center, which is expected to serve 150 participants.
Other such centers in Bedford, Blacksburg and Salem are planned, Pressman said.
The emphasis of the wellness-based programs will be to keep the elderly and disabled healthy and out of acute-care settings such as hospitals and nursing homes.
For participants who can no longer live in their homes — or for those contemplating a move from a nursing home — Kissito is offering affordable apartment space.
To that end, the nonprofit has purchased the former Shenandoah Homes retirement home in Roanoke County. The 144-unit complex is being renovated and will be renamed Kissito Village.
Other housing opportunities are under development. While medical care is covered by Medicare and Medicaid, the cost of housing is not.
Participation in PACE is voluntary. To qualify, Medicare or Medicaid recipients must be 55 or older, eligible for nursing home care, a resident of the service area and able to live safely in the community.
Under the program, the cost of care for a group of participants is set upfront, as opposed to the traditional fee-for-service model, according to the CMS website.
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