Sen. Gene Dornink: Nursing home funding flowing to local facilities

Published 5:21 pm Friday, August 11, 2023

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Friends and neighbors,

Throughout the 2023 legislative session, I heard from local nursing homes about the dire situation they are facing. In Minnesota, there have been the equivalent of 45 nursing home closures, and seniors continue to be turned away from nursing homes because they could not provide enough staff to ensure quality and safe care. Yet even with a historic budget surplus, the Democrat leadership in the House and Senate chose to not adequately deliver relief to our nursing homes in their budget bills. That is why my Senate Republican colleagues and I fought for meaningful investment in Minnesota’s nursing homes.

I am pleased to share that nursing homes across the state are seeing the results of this session, as funding secured by Republicans is flowing into their facilities.

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Recently, more than 300 nursing homes across the state received their first Nursing Facility Grants payment. These direct grants are part of the $300 million agreement to help nursing homes reached back in May. These grants can be used for several purposes that will help our facilities become more financially stable and bounce back after the tumultuous COVID years.

In Senate District 23, a total of 11 nursing homes received their first payment on Aug. 1, 2023. A second payment is planned for Aug. 1, 2024. In total, we are told local facilities will receive the following funding:

• Good Samaritan Society – Albert Lea in Alberta Lea: $546,321

•Good Samaritan Society – Comforcare in Austin: $405,743

• Meadow Manor in Grand Meadow: $329,429

• New Richland Care Center in New Richland: $405,743

• Parkview Care Center – Wells in Wells: $345,495

• Prairie Manor Care Center in Blooming Prairie: $369,594

• Sacred Heart Care Center Inc. in Austin: $461,974

• St. John’s Lutheran Home in Albert Lea: $405,743

• St. John’s Lutheran Community on Fountain Lake in Albert Lea: $ 562,387

• St Mark’s Lutheran Home in Austin: $ 453,941

• Thorne Crest Retirement Center in Albert Lea: $ 433,859

In addition to the Nursing Facility Grants, the nursing home package will provide a temporary, daily Medicaid rate add-on for a period of 18 months. This will translate to roughly an additional $12.35 per day, per person. This funding will help facilities continue providing quality care for some of our most vulnerable Minnesotans.

Finally, this package includes $75 million to support our long-term care industry’s most important resource, staff such as yourself. The Workforce Incentive Fund for Nursing Facilities can be used to pay for: hiring and retention bonuses; contributions to retirement savings plans; employee-owned benefits; education and professional development opportunities; and other employee wellness initiatives.

Thank you to our care providers for your commitment to ensuring our seniors and vulnerable Minnesotans continue to receive high-quality care. There is still work to be done to address our state’s long-term care crisis, but this is a great first step in providing stability to a crucial industry and supporting the workers who care for our loved ones.

As always, please do not hesitate to contact me. Feel free to email me at or give me a call at 651-296-5240.