Close-up of hands gesturing during business meeting in office

A new CEO has taken the helm of InnovAge after regulatory action by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services led to the resignation of former chief executive Maureen Hewitt over the weekend. Newly installed CEO Patrick Blair joined InnovAge less than two months ago from Bayada Home Healthcare where he was group vice president of home health, hospice and personal care.

Headshot of Patrick Blair
CEO Patrick Blair

The leadership shake-up follows a decision by CMS in late December to suspend enrollment at the firm’s Programs of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) in Colorado. An audit by CMS found InnovAge failed substantially to provide participants with medically necessary items and services that are covered under PACE, a community-based program for dual eligible Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries.

Blair told McKnight’s Home Care Daily Pulse in an email that despite the action by CMS, InnovAge’s growth strategy remains on target.

“We look forward to bringing Programs of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly, or PACE, to older adults in new markets, including Florida, Kentucky and Indiana,” Blair said. “While we are still relatively early in the process for these de novos, we remain on track, barring factors that are beyond our control that may impact our expected timeline. Opening a PACE center requires state and CMS approval, and center also has additional approvals needed before we can open.”

The violations cited by CMS include failure to provide all Medicare and Medicaid covered services, failure to provide 2/7 care to participants in all care settings, failure to provide accessible and adequate services, failure to coordinate care delivery, and failure of InnovAge primary care providers to manage participants’ medical needs. CMS said the enrollment sanction will remain in effect until it is satisfied that InnovAge Colorado has corrected the causes of the violations and is convinced the violations won’t happen again.

The sanctions are a blow to InnovAge and to Hewitt, who took the fast-growing company public nearly 10 months ago. InnovAge currently operates 18 PACE centers serving nearly 7,000 people in Colorado, California, New Mexico, Pennsylvania and Virginia. The company announced plans last year to expand into the three additional markets.