Jefferson City, MO – January 1 meant the end of a 20-year old Missouri law that's expected to result in a surge of construction at state nursing homes.
The law, which is now off the books, only allowed nursing home owners to expand their operations in markets where existing homes were filled to more than 90% capacity.
With most counties in Missouri having more than enough beds to meet patient demand, that has meant little new construction on facilities.
Officials say the law's expiration will result in a flood of requests to expand or build new nursing homes.
State regulators say many of the requests will come from operators offering residential care, who want to expand into more intensive skilled nursing services.
Officials say the moratorium is likely to become an issue in the legislative struggle this year over nursing home reforms.