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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Marj Fogelman (R)

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Thursday, April 13, 2023

ST. PAUL – As nursing homes statewide continue to close due to legislative inaction, State Representative Marj Fogelman (R-Fulda) is calling on House Democrats to address this crisis head-on.


“Too many nursing homes are closing and nearly all of those that remain in Minnesota are operating at limited capacity,” Fogelman said. “With our $17 billion surplus we could very easily end this crisis, but our House Democrat majority would rather spend money on their pet projects.”


Fogelman said the COVID pandemic, inflation and increased operating costs, wage challenges, and a workforce shortage that is estimated at 20,000 have all contributed to the nursing home crisis.


Since 2020, almost 2,600 nursing home beds have been taken out of service, which Fogelman said equates to more than 50 nursing homes that would have a 50 bed capacity. During that time, 15 nursing homes have also closed permanently.


The number of Minnesotans who are over the age of 65 now totals more than 1.3 billion. Fogelman said this is leading to a need for more skilled nursing home care, but nursing homes aren’t able to keep up. In October alone, 11,000 senior citizens were turned away from long-term care settings.


In response, House Democrats have proposed sending $3.9 million in new revenue to nursing homes over the next two years.  


“It’s not a serious attempt to end this crisis, especially when you consider we have a $17 billion budget surplus,” Fogelman said. “If the Democrats have the money to waste on a $194 million high-speed train to Duluth, then they should be able to prioritize our nursing homes and ensure that Minnesota’s senior citizens will have the care they need.”