ElderLaw News

ElderLaw News is a weekly e-newsletter that brings you reports of legal developments and other trends of vital interest to seniors and their advocates. This newsletter is brought to you by The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C., William S. Fralin, Esq., President.

Pace Program Helps Seniors Stay at Home

A recent article in the Daily Press addressed the Riverside Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly or PACE.

The Riverside program is based in Newport News and will serve seniors on the Peninsula. Sentara Healthcare has operated PACE in Virginia Beach for several years. Funding for the program comes from Medicaid and Medicare. The Riverside PACE has 50 seniors enrolled as of May, with the current capacity of 150 expected to expand to 300. PACE allows seniors to remain in their homes, while receiving their medical care through the program center. The PACE center is part senior community center and part medical clinic.

To qualify for the Riverside program, one must live in Hampton, Newport News, Poquoson or lower York County, be 55 years of age or older, and qualify for nursing-home level of care. Because PACE will coordinate and provide medical care, the applicants must switch to the PACE healthcare providers. During the week, buses pick up PACE participants from their homes and transport them to the PACE center for a full day of meals, physical exercise and socialization, then the buses return the participants to their homes. If they need medical attention, then the clinic at the PACE center is available for immediate care. Transportation is provided to and from the PACE center for appointments with specialists. The PACE center building is open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays, but telephone lines are staffed 24 hours a day if participants need assistance after hours.

The center offers activities that promote mobility and cognitive skills, prescription management, personal grooming, and chaplain services. The center plans to add other services including a hairstylist, dentist, voice-activated device to capture memoirs, and small-group interaction for Alzheimer's and dementia patients.

PACE benefits seniors by providing them with full medical care as well as activities and socialization, while permitting them to live at home with a spouse, family member or other caregivers, rather than in a facility. The program also helps families by giving them a break from caregiving during the day, with the reassurance that their seniors are safe and well-cared for.

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The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C. is an elder law firm. We represent older persons, disabled persons, their families, and their advocates. The practice of elder law includes estate planning, estate and trust administration, powers of attorney, advance medical directives, titling of assets and designations of beneficiaries, guardianships, conservatorships, and public entitlements such as Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, and SSI, disability planning, income tax planning and preparation, care management, and fiduciary services. For more information about The Estate Planning & Elder Law Firm, P.C., please visit our website at http://www.chroniccareadvocacy.com.

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