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~ Allows consumers to remain in their homes ~

RICHMOND - Governor Timothy M. Kaine today announced $1.5 million in start-up funding for six Programs of All Inclusive Care for the Elderly, or PACE, across the Commonwealth. The PACE program, which combines Medicare and Medicaid funds, is a comprehensive service package that allows the elderly to continue living at home while receiving services rather than be institutionalized.

The Virginia Department of Medical Assistance Services (DMAS) will award $250,000 to each of the following organizations to initiate a PACE program, and DMAS will assist and advise each local organization as they begin the process:

• Hampton Roads Area (Riverside Health System)

• Southwest Virginia (Mountain Empire for Older Citizens, Appalachian Agency for Senior Citizens)

• Greater Richmond Area (Bon Secours, Riverside)

• and Central Virginia (Centra Health in Lynchburg

In addition, Sentara Senior Community Care has operated a PACE program in the Hampton Roads region since 1998.

“These programs move Virginia closer to having a ‘one-stop’ long-term care system that is responsive to consumers, coordinates their health and social needs, is cost effective, and allows consumers to remain in their homes and communities for as long as possible,” Governor Kaine said. “This is the kind of program that all of us would want for our friends and family members as each of us eventually is faced with the need for long-term care and support.”

PACE programs combine both Medicare and Medicaid funding to provide an entire spectrum of health and long-term care services -- preventive, primary, acute, and long-term care services -- to the frail elderly in their homes and community. These funding awards are part of Governor Kaine’s broader efforts to ensure that all Medicaid services for the elderly and persons with disabilities are provided through a comprehensive and coordinated approach that supports community living.

Participants must be at least 55 years old, live in the PACE service area, and be certified as eligible for nursing home care by DMAS.

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