Due to full waiting lists, Americare plans to start building its sixth long-term care facility in Columbia at the end of September. More than 20 long-term care facilities have opened in just the past year in Missouri.
“Columbia has just grown so much the last 10-20 years and has become so much more than just a college town,” said Henley Montgomery, head of development for Americare. “The amount of assisted living supply may not have kept up with the population growth in Columbia.”
Since 2000, the population of Columbia has grown from 84,531 to 115,276, according to the U.S.Census Bureau. During that time, eight long-term care facilities have opened in Columbia.
There are 1,148 long-term care facilities across the state, and 16 in Columbia, according to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services.
In the last year, 21 long-term care facilities have opened in Missouri, with three of those in Columbia. The new facility in Columbia will be most similar to Americare’s Colony Pointe facility in the city, which was finished in July 2012.
“The two other facilities in Columbia like the one that will be at the new location are at full (capacity), with waiting lists,” Montgomery said.
The new facility will consist of 16-20 independent cottages, 30 assisted living units and 16 units for a memory care facility. Although other Americare locations have independent cottages, this will be the first facility in Columbia with these accommodations.
Americare completes about three to five of these types of projects per year, Montgomery said, and has facilities in 43 cities throughout Missouri. Columbia is the only place in Missouri that the organization is planning to build another facility at this time.