New PACE Center Openings 
Image of Stockton PACE
2019 has seen the opening of four new PACE centers in California, increasing access to the proven PACE model of care.  Stockton PACE celebrated its grand opening with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on February 28, 2019. Stockton PACE program will provide care to help seniors in Stanislaus County and San Joaquin County age in place.

With the opening of its new, state-of the-art center in downtown Oakland in June, Center for Elders’ Independence (CEI) continues to address escalating needs for coordinated healthcare and social services for East Bay seniors. The new downtown Oakland Center provides care for seniors 55+ with multiple health challenges, giving them the comprehensive support they need to live safely at home, rather than in nursing homes.

In addition to these openings, two new PACE programs have started up in 2019. Pacific PACE, located in Pasadena, began operations on July 1 and Gary and Mary West PACE, located in San Marcos, opened its doors on September 1.
Bill to Streamline PACE Licensing Advances
AB 1128 (Petrie-Norris), CalPACE sponsored legislation to streamline the licensing process for PACE clinics, adult day health centers, and home health agencies, passed the California Assembly on September 11th and is on its way to the Governor. The legislation would exempt PACE clinics, adult day health centers, and home health agencies that serve exclusively PACE participants or those in the process of being enrolled in PACE from licensing by the CA Department of Public Health. The bill would give the Department of Health Care Services authority to regulate and oversee these facilities effective on no later than January 1, 2021. CalPACE appreciates all the work its members put into the passage of the legislation as well as the technical assistance provided by the Department of Health Care Services and Department of Public Health.
Updated Federal PACE Regulation Provides Flexibilities for PACE Model
CMS Logo
Updated federal regulations overseeing PACE programs nationally were released by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on June 3 and took effect on August 2. The released final rule is the first comprehensive update of the PACE regulation since 2006.
The updates to the regulation provide new flexibility for PACE programs in several areas, including:

·         Allowing community based physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants to serve as PACE primary care providers without the use of waivers;
·         Providing PACE organizations with greater flexibility with respect to involvement of individual
IDT members in scheduled reassessments and unscheduled reassessments due to changes
in health status.
·         Affording CMS greater flexibility with respect to the frequency of PACE program audits. After a
PACE organization completes an initial three-year trial period, audits no longer are required at
least once every two years. The decision with respect to the frequency of audits post-trial
period are to be based on a risk assessment undertaken by CMS.
·         Allowing PACE organizations to utilize contracted individuals or entities for marketing
activities if they are appropriately trained on PACE program requirements. 
Master Plan for Aging Implementation Begins 
Caregiving in a PACE Center
In June, Governor Gavin Newsom issued Executive Order N-14-N calling for the creation of Master Plan for Aging to be developed by October 1, 2020. The Master Plan will serve as a blueprint that can be used by state government, local communities, private organizations and philanthropy to build environments that promote healthy aging. In his statement accompanying the order the Governor noted that the Golden State is getting grayer and needs to be ready for the major population changes headed its way. The Governor’s vision is a master plan that brings everyone to the table – local communities, labor, private sector and philanthropy – to help guide the state toward taking better care of older Californians. 

On August 15, the Secretary of the California Health and Human Services Agency announced appointments to a Master Plan for Aging Stakeholder Advisory Committee that will provide advice and input the state in the development of the plan. CalPACE is pleased that Peter Hansel, CEO of CalPACE has been appointed as one of the members of the advisory committee. The advisory committee held its first meeting on September 17th to discuss a proposed framework and goals for healthy aging in California.
September Recognized as PACE Month in California
Assembly Concurrent Resolution 131 (Petrie-Norris) proclaiming September 2019 as PACE Month in California was approved by the California Legislature on September 9, 2019. ACR 131 notes that PACE is a fully integrated model of care that provides comprehensive, highly coordinated care allowing frail older adults who meet state eligibility criteria for nursing home level of care to continue living in the community. PACE programs in California now collectively serve over 8,800 frail elderly beneficiaries and provide and coordinate care through 47 PACE Center and alternative care sites in the state.
About CalPACE
CalPACE, the California PACE Association, is a 501(c)(6) association that is dedicated to the expansion of comprehensive health care services to seniors with chronic care needs through the Program of All-inclusive Care for Elderly (PACE). Through education and advocacy, CalPACE members strive to support, maintain, and safeguard the PACE model and promote high-quality comprehensive health care services to California's seniors. 
CalPACE represents fourteen operational PACE organizations in California. Our members and allied organizations provide and coordinate services to more than 8,800 participants through 47 PACE Centers and Alternative Care Settings in 14 counties.