Via Christi gets contracts for PACE, a program to assist elderly

04/03/2014 12:01 PM

08/08/2014 10:23 AM

The Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services is expanding the Program for All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly, which aims to help low-income seniors get services to stay independent and out of long-term care facilities and hospitals.

PACE, which is funded by Medicare and Medicaid, includes such services as in-home meals, transportation, help with bathing and housekeeping, physical therapy and adult day care.

The program will expand from eight to 59 counties, according to the state.

As part of the expansion, Via Christi has been awarded contracts for several counties, including Butler, Cowley, Sumner, Harper and Kingman, said Brad Raymond, director of marketing for Via Christi HOPE, the first PACE program in Kansas, which opened in September 2002.

“The goal is to have PACE be available to as many Kansas residents as possible and to take that model that looks at accountable care, capitated (per person) payments and known expenditures and have a program that provides efficient medical care and keeps medical costs as low as possible,” Raymond said.

Via Christi was also awarded contracts for six counties in northeast Kansas, including Johnson County, to offer PACE in 2015. It was also awarded contracts for 12 counties in southeast Kansas, but a time frame hasn’t been determined for that area.

“The idea is to have a hub in Sedgwick County and Johnson County and then start expanding,” Raymond said.

Reimbursements to Via Christi will be based on the number of participants in the program, Raymond said.

Via Christi’s HOPE program in Wichita currently has 213 participants in Sedgwick County and has served more than 670 people since it started, Raymond said.

“If we do our jobs well, we’ll save money for the health care system overall,” Raymond said.

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