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.