ChristianaCare to open Milford office focusing on seniors, families

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Site will join Rehoboth area office with the same mission

ChristianaCare is expanding into the fast-growing Milford area with the opening later this year of a new primary care practice for families and a separate practice exclusively for members of the Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Delaware Medicare Advantage plans.

The two practices are slated to open in October 2022 in the same location at Teal Creek Plaza, 701 N. DuPont Blvd, Milford.

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“ChristianaCare is on a mission to provide the right care, at the right place for everyone we are privileged to serve,” said Christine Donohue Henry, M.D., ChristianaCare’s chief population health officer. “This includes identifying communities that need primary and specialty care services as well as services for those 65 and older, ensuring they have access to high-quality, convenient health care. We are excited to open this dual practice site and offer families and seniors truly exceptional care.”

The nearly 10,000-square-foot practice site in Milford will house both the traditional primary care practice and a model of care for the members of the Highmark Medicare Advantage plans. Patients will be able to have in-person visits with providers as well as the opportunity to connect virtually with expert specialists throughout ChristianaCare’s network of services.

The 65 and older practice will be reserved for members of Highmark Medicare Advantage plans. Patients 65 and older who are not members will be able to join the traditional primary care practice at the location. Medicare-eligible beneficiaries who decide to join or switch to the Highmark Medicare Advantage plans during open enrollment in the fall can transition into the 65 and older practice.

“This new care model will serve the unique needs of the Highmark Medicare Advantage members,” said Ina Li, M.D., ChristianaCare’s clinical director of Advanced Primary Care. “To support healthy aging, we will address acute and chronic health conditions, maintenance of mobility and functional status, nutrition, behavioral health, and medication needs.”

ChristianaCare cited an increasing need for primary and specialty care services in communities of southern Kent and northern Sussex counties as a reason for the expansion.

According to state projections, the population of Milford is expected to grow by 14% by 2040. Those 65 and older are expected to grow by 23% over the same period.

In addition, residents in these communities have higher rates of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, osteoarthritis, and other chronic conditions than the state average, according to 2019 data from the Delaware Health Tracker.

To help alleviate the mounting demand for health care services in Sussex County, ChristianaCare has announced plans to open a similar dual practice site for families and seniors near Rehoboth n fall 2022. That site will also feature the same model of care for people age 65 and over who are members of the Highmark Medicare Advantage plans.

Last July, ChristianaCare collaborated with Bayhealth and Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield in a first-of-its-kind association in the first state to create the two new Medicare Advantage plans CareVio, ChristianaCare’s care platform, manages the chronic health conditions of plan participants.

ChristianaCare has expanded beyond its base in New Castle County to faster-growing Kent and Sussex counties.

Until fairly recently, the state’s hospital systems often stayed within their market areas. In the case of ChristianaCare, more of its patients have moved to faster-growing Kent and Sussex counties.

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