After 20 years of caring for families at Pueblo Community Health Center, Dr. Rona Knudsen embraces her role as InnovAge PACE’s Center Medical Director, helping vulnerable older adults in the community. <br />
Caregivers Find Support in PACE
July 14, 2020
Robert, Cecelia, and Janet were featured on Lifetime Television’s The Balancing Act. The national show helped to raise awareness of PACE as a model of care to help older adults stay independent.
Family finds solution in PACE
While living in Madison, Wisconsin, Robert was looking for options to help provide care for his mother so she could continue living with him and his wife. Unable to find a solution, they moved to Thornton, Colorado, in 2018, to be closer to family. His mother, Cecelia, enrolled in PACE shortly after they moved.
Cecelia says she enjoys making friends at the Thornton PACE center and appreciates the care she receives from the staff. “They get to know each individual senior—both our plusses and our minuses—and take good care of us without offending anyone,” she says.
An information technology professional, Robert has continued a busy contracting practice in Colorado. “Without InnovAge, I couldn’t work and take the business trips I need for my job,” he says. “We’ve used respite care at least two times in the nearly two years Mom has been in the PACE program.”
Robert notes the all-inclusive care, including transportation, as a primary benefit of PACE. “We were experiencing hours-long extravaganzas to get mom back-and-forth to doctors’ appointments. Now we know she’s safely getting to doctors’ appointments and I’m just a phone call away for any updates.”
Structure and coordinated care make a difference
Before InnovAge, Janet’s days were spent coordinating care for her cousin. “I made sure she was safe, talked to doctors, made sure medications were ordered,” she says. After being her cousin’s primary caregiver, Janet found InnovAge and the Denver PACE center. “InnovAge took the weight off my shoulders. They coordinate everything and provide all of my cousin’s healthcare needs, even taking her to specialist appointments when needed and giving me updates afterwards.”
“It’s changed her life knowing she has a support team that makes her feel very cared for,” Janet says. “It takes the stress off of me and makes me happy to see her taken care of.”