Tuesday, November 29, 2022


Connecting health outcomes to climate solutions and lower utility bills, Engagement Center finding success near Boston's troubled 'Mass and Cass' and more protections coming for PA Children's Service providers.


Georgia breaks a state record for early voting, Democrats are one step closer to codifying same-sex marriage, and Arizona county officials refuse to certify the results of the midterm elections.


A water war in Southwest Utah has ranchers and Native tribes concerned, federal solar subsidies could help communities transition to renewable energy, and Starbucks workers attempt to unionize.

South Dakota Communities Struggle With Nursing-Home Closures


Monday, December 2, 2019   

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — The number of rural communities with few options for elder care continues to grow across South Dakota. The Hudson Care and Rehab Center in the southeastern corner of the state was the most recent closure, and marked the sixth nursing home center closure in the past year-and-a-half.

Mark Deak, executive director with the South Dakota Health Care Association, called the closures a "crisis" and said it's all the result of inadequate funding.

"You hear the word 'crisis' a lot, and sometimes I think that word is overused. But it's certainly not in this case,” Deak said. “And the primary factor is under-funding. South Dakota has one of the largest Medicaid gaps in the country."

More than half of the total resident population in nursing centers relies on Medicaid to pay for their care. South Dakota lawmakers authorized a 10% increase in Medicaid reimbursement for the state's nursing facilities earlier this year, but Deak said nursing centers still lose an average of $42 per day for each resident paying through Medicaid.

According to Deak, the statewide costs of unreimbursed nursing-center care total more than $48 million annually. He noted South Dakota is not alone in its struggle to maintain housing options for the elderly and disabled.

"It's a widespread challenge for many, many states,” he said. “I just think, given the nature of South Dakota and its rather small population and yet very large geographic land mass, that problem is exacerbated."

In Nebraska, 16 nursing facilities closed between 2015 and 2018, and 22 have been placed under state receivership - the majority of them located in rural areas. Deak said he believes the crisis calls for a statewide and national discussion.

"None of us are getting any younger, and I believe that obligation to care for our loved ones - our parents, our grandparents cared for us, we need to be able to do the same for them - and we just need to make it a priority,” he said.

In addition to Hudson, recent long-term care center closures in South Dakota have occurred in Sioux Falls, Huron, Madison, Mobridge, Tripp, Bryant and Rosholt.

get more stories like this via email

The city-run Engagement Center is a low-barrier day facility, which serves a few hundred people each day from the nearby "Mass and Cass" area, offering everything from bathroom facilities and a clean bed to referrals to drug-treatment facilities, dental care and even writing groups. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

Boston's 'Mass and Cass' area, with its large homeless population and open-air drug market, remains a trouble spot for city officials, but staff at …

Social Issues

Maryland's Juvenile Restoration Act has been in effect for more than a year now and its impact has people talking about additional reforms. The act …

Social Issues

Local candidates that signed onto a no-corporate-money pledge made midterm election gains in Charleston. Katie Lauer, co-chair of West Virginia …

Research indicates that the number of women who have experienced Traumatic Brain Injury secondary to domestic violence is 11 to 12 times greater than experienced by military personnel and athletes combined. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

A new statewide initiative aims to help connect domestic-violence survivors with medical providers, with a focus on treating traumatic brain injury…


A successful program that helps low-income households weatherize homes and lower energy bills is setting its sights on improving the health outcomes o…

According to First Things First, 90% of a child's brain develops before he or she starts kindergarten. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

The Arizona New Parent Guide is a resource that is intended to help new parents meet the challenges of having a baby and support their baby's health …


An environmental advocacy group in Virginia has been working to bridge generational gaps. Third Act Virginia began as a group of elder climate …

Social Issues

In just two months, it should be easier for providers of children's services in Pennsylvania's child-welfare and foster-care system to get the …


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021