Image of male nurse pushing senior woman in a wheelchair in nursing facility

Legislation that would allow for new changes to the Programs of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) program was introduced in the House this week.

The PACE Innovation Act of 2015 would authorize the Department of Health and Human Services to waive certain requirements in order to test “innovative payment and delivery models” in order to reduce expenditures and serve more individuals. The changes would also allow PACE programs to include high-need, high-cost people under the age of 55. Currently, PACE participants must be over 55 and require a nursing home level of care.

“Many PACE organizations see the needs in their community and are excited to show how the PACE model’s team approach to care can serve younger individuals with physical or intellectual disabilities,” said Shawn Bloom, president and CEO of the National PACE Association, in a prepared statement.

The PACE Innovation Act of 2015 was introduced by a group of 19 bipartisan House representatives. PACE currently operates 114 programs in 32 states.

In June, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services lifted a requirement that allowed only nonprofit entities to participate in PACE programs.