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Sat Mar 2, 2019, 11:45 AM

Legislative committee votes down $8M save for South Dakota nursing homes

The clock is ticking for legislators to solve what industry experts call a statewide crisis for South Dakota nursing homes. With just over two weeks until the 2019 legislative session wraps, lawmakers have killed two bills that aimed to resuscitate the industry.

Five nursing homes in the state have closed in the past three years, due in part to South Dakota's low Medicaid reimbursement rate for residents of long-term care facilities. South Dakota's reimbursement rate is the lowest in the country $146 per day even though the average daily cost to house a nursing home patient is $181 per day.

For every Medicaid recipient they treat, South Dakota Health Care Association Director Mark Deak said a long-term care facility loses money. He told members of the House Appropriations committee on Tuesday, Feb. 26, that the unreimbursed costs add up to $66 million annually across the state.

"It's absolutely critical that we change course," Deak said.

Read more: https://rapidcityjournal.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/legislative-committee-votes-down-m-save-for-sd-nursing-homes/article_460e8a42-800e-54aa-b975-7aa971ec4ebe.html

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