Tennova ending elderly program GAP

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT)--Your elderly parents could soon be without the care they need. Tennova is cancelling a long-time service for seniors.

Tennova's Geriatric Assessment Program has been taking care of seniors for decades. Office on Aging Director Susan Long says, "GAP has been very important for 20 years. Our seniors have depended on the program for many years."

Tennova says its too expensive to keep. Tennova Vice President of Mission Services Becky Dodson says, "Something we've struggled with for several years. As we've seen the changes in reimbursement."

Twenty-eight hundred patients have been coming here to the Riverside Medical Center for help. Soon they'll have to go somewhere else. Someplace like the University of Tennessee Medical Center which offers a similar program. Susan Long from the Office on Aging tells me this will have a huge impact. Susan Long says, "It's a problem especially for caregivers because they found a lot of help through program."

But Dodson disagrees. Dodson says, "It's not as dire as stopping primary care. Will their day to day life be affected? Probably, but not tremendously. Dodson says it will be tougher for caregivers.

Alzheimer's Tennessee will be reaching out to Tennova and patients who need help.

If you need help, call Alzheimer's Tennessee at 544-6288.