The Missouri Senate has endorsed a bill that could boost Medicaid payments for nursing homes.

The legislation given initial approval Wednesday would require reimbursement rates for long-term care facilities to be recalculated annually.

Legislative researchers estimate it could result in an additional $92 million for nursing homes in the 2019 budget, including $33 million from state funds and $59 million from federal funds. That could rise to an estimated $166 million in 2020 and $229 million in 2021.

The bill is sponsored by Sen. Dan Brown, the chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. Brown says he fears some nursing homes could close if Missouri doesn't increase its Medicaid reimbursement rates.

Even with an annual recalculation, the amount actually paid to nursing homes would depend on what is budgeted.

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