Nov 25 2013
Senator Warner spent the morning in Charlottesville, beginning the day with Rick & Jane on WINA 1070 Radio and talking about advanced care planning for the elderly, the rocky rollout of the Affordable Care Act and his efforts on the House/Senate budget conference committee.
“It seems to me that everything you work on in the Senate, has been bipartisan? Are people beginning pay attention to you?” asked Jane. Senator Warner responded, “Every major piece of legislation I’ve worked on is bipartisan. At the end of the day that becomes code for people that – hey- maybe it’s good for the whole country and not just a particular political party.”
After leaving the studio, Senator Warner attended the ribbon-cutting at the new Blue Ridge Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) Center. Blue Ridge PACE is a joint venture of Riverside Health System, University of Virginia Health System and the Jefferson Area Board on Aging. The new center will offer comprehensive care to approximately 175 older adults that will enable them to remain in their homes and communities. PACE serves those aged 55 and older who meet Virginia’s criteria for nursing home admission, and the new Blue Ridge facility will serve families in Charlottesville and the counties of Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa and Nelson.
“PACE is a great example of how community partners can come together to make an impact,” said Senator Warner. “We can't continue with health care silos. We need more collaboration.”
In addressing the crowd of over 50 people, Senator Warner reflected on his family’s own experience with elderly care, and the struggle to access relevant community resources.
“The bravest thing I ever saw was my dad – a World War II Marine -- taking care of my mom during her 11 year struggle with Alzheimer’s,” said Senator Warner. "Just as we think about choices for seniors while they are living, we need to have a conversation about the next stages of life. This conversation needs to happen between family members and with a doctor and their spiritual and faith counselors, if they choose. My family did not do that, and then it was too late."