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Fri Jul 12, 2019, 04:52 AM

South Dakota lawmakers ease regulations on nursing home beds

PIERRE | With yet another nursing home closing later this summer, making the seventh statewide in three years, legislators are lifting some departmental rules on redistributing nursing home beds with the hope of helping South Dakota's nursing home crisis.

The Legislature's Interim Rules Review Committee on Monday approved rule changes for the Department of Health's process for redistributing nursing home beds in the state. Previously, in order for a facility to obtain additional beds, it had to submit things like community support letters and audits in order to make their case to the DOH.

DOH Deputy Secretary Tom Martinez told the legislators Monday that the process "seemed to work very well" since it was put in place in 2012, but has recently created complications and confusion amidst the industry's ongoing struggles in the state. Now, he said the department is sitting on a pool of 400 open beds which are yet to be redistributed.

He said the department through the rule changes hopes to streamline the process for homes in order to get those beds back into use.

Read more: https://rapidcityjournal.com/news/local/sd-lawmakers-ease-regulations-on-nursing-home-beds/article_d277ae0b-ce72-5a62-b4f5-7b5046cb5bc8.html

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