What Is PACE?

PACE Training Guide

The Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) offers a variety of services, with many of them provided onsite at a PACE Center.

PACE is an alternative to nursing home care and – through an interdisciplinary care team (IDT) of physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, social workers, therapists, van drivers, and aides – coordinates and provides preventive, primary, acute, and long-term care services, so older individuals can continue living in the community.

PACE began in 1971 in San Francisco as a noble idea by Dr. William Gee and social worker Marie-Louise Ansak to design a comprehensive system of health and social care that allowed people to receive care while living at home. Today, that idea has expanded into a nationally replicated, federally funded program. Currently, there are 149 PACE programs operating 273 PACE centers in 30 states helping elderly individuals maintain their independence, dignity, and quality of life.

The interdisciplinary team collaborates with seniors and their families to create a comprehensive and coordinated personal care plan, make all necessary appointments, coordinate specialists, fill prescriptions, and provide transportation to and from PACE centers.

While at a PACE center, participants receive a hot meal, social interaction, and recreational activities, in addition to medical clinic check-ups, physical therapy, and/or rehabilitative therapy, as determined by the interdisciplinary team.

Each PACE provider in California delivers a full range of health and long-term care services, including hospital, emergency, and nursing home care. Once enrolled in PACE, the amount you pay each month will not change no matter what care and services a participant might need. There is never a co-pay, deductible, or coverage gap. The program provides all the care and services covered by Medicare and Medicaid, as authorized by the interdisciplinary team, as well as additional medically-necessary care and services not covered by Medicare and Medicaid.

To qualify for participating in PACE program, an individual must:

  • be 55 years of age or older;
  • live in a PACE service area;
  • be able to live safely in the community at the time of enrollment, and;
  • be certified by the state to need a nursing home level of care.

Find a PACE Provider in Your Community

A doctor with her arm around an elderly woman