Boone Medical Center opens Monday with new priorities

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COLUMBIA - Boone Hospital Nifong Medical Plaza opened its doors for the first time Monday in south Columbia. 

The $30 million facility has been under construction since July 2014.

"It's really going to change the way health care is delivered in this market," said Fred Parry, chairman of the Board of Trustees.

The facility will offer services for primary care needs, convenient care and physical therapy.

The main building is 85,000 sq. ft. The board said in the future there is a possibility of adding three additional buildings on the site.

Boone Hospital hasn't opened a second location in 95 years. The Board of Trustees said the ultimate goal is making health care more accessible. 

"These days people want more convenience, they want access to pharmacy and access to primary care, and they want to do it all in one stop," Parry said. "The fact that we have all these service under one roof, is something that is going to be very appealing."

The center is on the corner of Forum and Nifong Boulevard, where just down the road on Providence there is also an MU Health Clinic. 

Parry said the one good thing about Columbia is there is "healthy competition."

"University Hospital is good at what they do, and Boone Hospital is great at what we do," Parry said. "So I think we complement each other more than anything."

More than 400 construction workers worked on the center since the project started back in late July 2014.

A group of construction workers on site said it has been an incredible project to work on.

"Seeing a part of it come together bit by bit every day was neat," a construction worker said.

Parry said in addition to the main site, $1 million was spent on off-site improvements to improve traffic flow.

The ribbon cutting was scheduled for 8:30 a.m. at the new campus on 900 W. Nifong to kick off the grand opening.