Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago: 2011-2012

Exterior (4)Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, formerly Children’s Memorial Hospital, is a 23-story, state-of-the-art hospital located in downtown Chicago on the campus of its academic partner, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and close to longstanding healthcare partners, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Prentice Women’s Hospital and the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago.

In June 2012, the hospital moved from its former location in Lincoln Park to a new location in downtown Chicago, where it opened as Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.  Lurie Children’s provides pediatric care in a setting that offers the latest benefits and innovations in medical technology, research and family-friendly design.    Patients receive highly specialized care in a family-centered environment that includes many support programs and amenities designed to make it more convenient for families to visit and remain together during treatment.  The hospital relies on philanthropic support to care for more than 148,000 children each year.

The Washington Square Health Foundation made a grant towards the Heroes for Life Campaign to fund an exam room in the Griffin Emergency Care Center (ER) in the new hospital, providing support toward the completion of Lurie Children’s.  The ER is designed for maximum flexibility and efficiency to accommodate projected volumes of more than 67,000 patients.   An expanded triage area allows patients to be rapidly assessed and transferred to an exam room.  Each exam room in the ER is specially designed to accommodate patients of all ages with various illnesses or injuries.  The overall design includes technology enhancements for staff such as an electronic patient tracking system and a wireless internal communications system.

WSHF funded an ER Study in 1993 that addressed the need for establishing triage areas in order to reduce ER overcrowding and overuse.  The Foundation has consistently supported grants to expand and improve Emergency Department services in the Chicagoland area.

The newly completed  facility includes the latest innovations in medical care and technology, enhanced clinical programs and advanced research directly affecting children, including:

  • The 36-bed Regenstein Cardiac Care Unit, an innovative model of care that combines the expertise of cardiologists, cardiovascular surgeons, neonatologists and nurses into one central unit where children with heart conditions can be treated from admission to discharge.
  • Expanded trauma capabilities in the Kenneth and Anne Griffin Emergency Care Center, a Level I Trauma Center with 45 patient beds (an increase of 20 from the current facility) and state-of-the-art technology, including dedicated diagnostic radiology suites and a CT scanner.
  • A larger outpatient clinical research center with a pharmacy, specialized staff and data analysis systems that will be located next to a 12-room inpatient unit for children who require overnight monitoring while participating in clinical trials of innovative new therapies.

Some of the biggest fans of the hospital are not only patients, but their parents.  “Psychologically, being in the hospital takes a toll on both children and their parents,” said Oskana P, whose daughter Naia was among the 160 children moved from the old hospital to the new hospital on June 9, 2012.  “But this place is just awesome.  It has space and energy.  You feel like you can breathe!”

As a result of thoughtful planning and design, Lurie Children’s will easily incorporate new technology as needed, allowing health care providers to continue to deliver effective, efficient and advanced medical care for the next fifty years or more.