Some Missouri Nursing Homes to Add Sprinklers :

JEFFERSON CITY, MO. -- The Missouri Legislature passed a mandate recently exempting small nursing homes in the state from having to install sprinkler systems. However, the bill calls for those facilities with more than 20 residents to install the fire safety improvements, according to a newspaper report.

The facilities have a grace period until Dec. 31, 2012, to comply with the mandate.

The sprinkler legislation was prompted after a fire killed 11 people in an Anderson, Mo., group home in November, according to the St. Joseph News-Press. In response to the facility not having a sprinkler system, state and health care officials sought a mandate that would require all residential care facilities, large or small, to have sprinklers.

According to Department of Health and Senior Services, about half of residential care facilities in the state are not equipped with sprinkler systems.

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