Louisville, Ky., is at the center of an effort to transform senior care in America

About a decade ago, Joseph Steier, CEO of long-term-care company Signature HealthCare, wanted to move the company away from Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. He needed to find more healthcare talent to grow the company, and he knew the post-acute industry would soon be going through a painful transformation with the value-based care shift and reimbursement cuts. He wanted to be near like-minded companies dealing with similar issues.

Steier chose Louisville, Ky., the land of the famed Kentucky Derby, mint juleps, barrels of bourbon and, curiously, a bunch of healthcare companies that focus in some way on the over-65 crowd. The city has long served as a headquarters for a large cluster of senior-care companies, including skilled-nursing, assisted-living, hospice, and home healthcare organizations that have helped drive its economy.

Medicare Advantage giant Humana, home-health company Kindred Healthcare, and assisted-living companies Atria Senior Living and Trilogy Health Services are among those that call Louisville home and helped build its $80 billion healthcare industry. For Steier and other startups and entrepreneurs who would later set up camp there, Louisville represented a hub of experts in the senior-care space—a place to grow and learn, troubleshoot common problems and collaborate on best practices.

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