Tester Secures Nearly $250,000 for Valley View Home in Glasgow
USDA rural Development Grant to restore lost health care revenue during pandemic
As a part of his continued fight to strengthen Montana’s nursing homes, U.S. Senator Jon Tester today secured $232,728 in United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development funding for Valley View Home in Glasgow to restore their lost health care revenue from the pandemic.
Tester secured this Rural Development funding for Valley View Home through his American Rescue Plan Act. Tester was the only member of Montana’s congressional delegation to support the legislation.
“As someone who’s lived and worked in rural Montana my whole life, I know just how important facilities like Valley View are to the health of Montana’s small towns,” said Tester. “Hospitals, schools, and senior care facilities are critical to the health and success of any rural community, and that’s why I fought hard to secure this funding for Valley View. This investment in the community will help Valley View stay afloat until the state starts seriously exploring long-term solutions, and I’ll keep working at the federal level to keep the facility strong.”
This Emergency Rural Health Care Grant will be used to restore Valley View Home’s lost health care revenue incurred during the COVID-19 pandemic. Valley View Home opened in Glasgow, Montana, in 1965 and serves multiple counties in northeastern Montana. It was established as a non-profit skilled nursing facility to provide elderly care and support, and over the years has expanded its services to include adding a special unit to care for Alzheimer’s patients and individuals suffering with traumatic brain injuries.
Tester has lead the charge to ensure Montana seniors have access to quality long-term care. In June, in a letter to the Office of Management and Budget, Tester urged the Biden Administration not to implement a burdensome staffing mandate that would exacerbate the serious recruitment and retention challenges currently facing nursing homes in rural America. Additionally, in January Tester led a bipartisan letter to CMS Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure to express concerns about the Administration’s intent to issue staffing mandates for nursing homes. Last year, Tester sent a letter to CMS urging the agency to reconsider a proposed rule to update Medicare payment policies and rates for skilled nursing facilities that would have resulted in a $320 million overall decrease in payments to long term care facilities.
In recent years, staffing issues and nursing home closures have limited access to senior care in rural communities. Since 2021, Montana has seen the closure of 11 nursing homes, and in 2022 alone, the state lost more than 850 nursing home beds, according to the Montana Health Care Association.