Pioneer Ridge Retirement Community plans to open Lawrence’s first post-acute rehabilitation facility.
Construction begins today on the new 18-bed unit, which will provide therapy for seniors. The building will be located behind Pioneer Ridge’s current skilled nursing and assisted living buildings, near Harvard Road and Wakarusa Drive.
“It’s going to be a stand-alone wing, where this is just for rehab where we have the goal to get you better and to get you back home or to independent living. That’s the goal,” said Marie Vogel, Pioneer Ridge’s administrator.
The new rehabilitation center will treat patients who have orthopedic issues such as fractures and joint replacements; post-surgical, post-stroke or neurological issues; or a variety of medical concerns that result in a need to regain abilities. The average length of stay should be three to four weeks.
The 9,500-square-foot center will have its own entrance, dining room, living room and enclosed courtyard.
“The rooms will be catered to a more homelike environment, where they will have the flat-screen TV on the wall. They will have lift chairs. The decorating will be more homelike with the carpet on the floor.” Vogel said.
She said the rehab unit will be open to anyone. Often these services are covered under Medicare Part A or other insurance.
“It is going to be geared toward the senior population,” she said. “You can see that the population is getting to the point — with the baby boomers — that it is time for the joint replacement surgeries, so the need for rehab is going to be increasing over time.”
Vogel said Pioneer Ridge often turns away referrals because of the lack of bed availability.
The $1.8 million rehab center is scheduled to open in January. The builder is Topeka-based McPherson Contractors Inc. Pioneer Ridge will be hiring nurses and other staff, such as housekeepers, for the new unit, but just how many employees hasn’t been determined yet.
Pioneer Ridge, owned by Topeka-based Midwest Health Management, has been in Lawrence for seven years.