Medicaid reimbursement is key to sustaining nursing homes

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By South Dakota
News Watch

In her budget address on January 23, Gov. Kristi Noem announced a plan to aid South Dakota’s financially troubled nursing home industry by raising the rate of Medicaid payments and providing $5 million in grants to facilities that innovate.

Noem shared her ideas as part of her first budget address to both houses of the state Legislature in which she laid out her proposed spending plan for fiscal 2019-20. The budget proposal includes $1.7 billion in state money that rises to $4.9 billion in overall spending when federal and other revenues are added in.

Noem’s long-term care proposals, which still require legislative approval, would provide $3.8 million in new, one-time funding to give nursing homes and other Medicaid service providers a 2.5 percent increase in the rate they are reimbursed by Medicaid. Another $5.8 million new allocation would raise the reimbursement rate by another 2.5 percent as an ongoing increase. To speed up delivery of the financial assistance, those increases would take effect on April 1 rather than at the start of the fiscal year on July 1.

 

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