Serving Proudly As The Voice Of Valley County Since 1913

USDA Invests More than $20 Million to Support Rural Health Care in Montana

Valley View Home Is A Recipient

U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development in Montana State Director Kathleen Williams announced on July 25 a total of $20 million in recent investments in 11 public organizations, non-profits, and rural health care facilities in Montana through the Emergency Rural Health Care (ERHC) grant program over the last two years. This funding was designed to ease economic strain brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and generate long-term health care sustainability in rural and Tribal communities. 

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.

“These funds provided direct relief to several critical care sites across Montana, enabling them to address challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and more,” said Williams. “Every Montanan deserves quality health care no matter where they live, and this funding not only provided immediate relief, but also helped rural health care facilities’ progress toward long-term sustainability.”

USDA awarded $129 million nationwide in Emergency Rural Health Care grants from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021 to improve health care facilities in rural and Tribal communities. These grants generated access to COVID-19 testing and vaccines, sustained rural health care services, and provided food assistance through food banks and food distribution facilities.

Available from early 2021 through 2022, this funding was a lifeline to rural Montanans and was distributed to eligible applicants through two available tracks:

Track One: Recovery grants provided immediate relief to address economic conditions arising from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Track Two: Impact grants to advance ideas and solutions focused on solving regional rural health care issues and advancing long-term sustainability of rural health.

Montana recipients included:

Valley View Home in Glasgow received a $232,728 grant (Track 1) to ensure it was able to maintain 30-day stock of durable medical items and other critical supplies such as personal protective equipment (PPE) during the Covid-19 pandemic. Because of its remote location, supply chain issues challenged this 96-bed skilled nursing facility that provides care for nearly 100 senior residents from multiple northeastern Montana counties.

“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 Senator Jon Tester (D-MT). “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.


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