JenCare Medical one-stop center caters wholly to seniors
Jennifer Ffrench-Parker | 9/20/2013, 6:04 a.m.
DECATUR South DeKalb seniors 65 years and older now have a beautiful medical center close to home.
JenCare Neighborhood Medical Centers, which caters to low to moderate-income adults on Medicare, opened a facility on Sept. 5 at 2124 Candler Road in Decatur.
It is the first JenCare Medical Center to open in DeKalb County, but Dr. Susan Schayes, regional medical director, says it won’t be the last.
Schayes said they are passionate about seniors and plan other centers in the county to make them accessible.
“Our centers are designed for seniors,” she said. “People are welcomed here like family.”
Schayes, a family physician who spent 15 years at Emory University before joining JenCare Med, said the one-stop-shop medical center is going to make a great difference in the community.
“This is an underserved area,” she said. “We are helping revitalize the economic and medical health of the community.”
JenCare Med, located in the shopping center anchored by DeKalb Supervalu, is operated by Miami Gardens, Fla.-based ChenMed, the nation’s fastest-growing integrated senior primary care medical practice.
The company remodeled a 12,000-square-foot under-used space in the Candler Plaza into a neighborhood medical center and its Georgia regional headquarters.
When it is up to full capacity, about 450 patients, the center will have up to eight doctors.
The Decatur center is the fourth JenCare Med to open in Georgia this summer. There are also centers in West End, East Point and North Druid Hill. A fifth metro Atlanta center is scheduled to open in Morrow this fall. By 2014, there will be 10 JenCare Med centers in metro Atlanta. There are also centers in Kentucky, Louisiana, Virginia and Illinois.
Regionally, Atlantans are aging rapidly, and the Atlanta Regional Commission says adults ages 45 to 64 make up the fastest-growing segment. It estimates that the region’s senior population will double between 2000 and 2015. By 2030, it says that one in five Atlantans will be over the age of 60.
In DeKalb, the number of adults ages 45 to 64 jumped 37,703 to 169,035 in the decade between 2000 and 2010.
Seniors with chronic diseases account for a growing portion of U.S. health care spending. Emory University researchers say that patients with five or more chronic conditions are responsible for more than 76 percent of Medicare spending, up from 50 percent in the mid-1980s.
In the June 2013 issue of Health Affairs, ChenMed announced that its senior health care centers had lowered by 38 percent the number of days seniors spend in the hospital.
Nationally, the company says a CDC/NCHS National Hospital Discharge Survey found that seniors 65 years and older stay in the hospital an average of 5.5 days and account for 13.6 million hospital stays annually.
The American Hospital Association says the average per patient cost exceeds $1,850 a day, for a total of $138.3 billion annually.
ChenMed says its health care model for seniors could save $52.5 billion annually with national saturation of its model.
Craig Tanio, ChenMed chief medical officer, says JenCare Med serves the high-risk, high-cost senior population with convenient access to board-certified doctors and unrivaled patient and physician time together.