(CHICAGO) — Rush University Medical Center today unveiled its initial plans for the further redevelopment of its campus in order to continue transforming its clinical, educational and research processes and programs. The campus expansion and renovation is part of Rush’s vision to increase access to care for patients, enhance academic teaching programs, and grow medical research — all while strengthening and growing Rush’s network of care facilities and providers throughout the Chicago area.
“Rush has long been in a leadership role in health care, and we are exploring ways we can address current and future health and educational needs,” said Dr. Larry Goodman, CEO of Rush University Medical Center and president of Rush University. “Health care today is not about just having a leading academic medical center. We are focused on being a leading academic health system.”
“With this goal in mind, we are putting all of the strategic pieces together and implementing our vision to have the best people, the best quality, the best programs and the highest value throughout our network.”
Rush has been developing a master design plan for its Near West Side campus. In early 2016, more detailed planning will begin, as described in a document filed this week with the state of Illinois. One of the key new features on the campus will be a comprehensive outpatient care facility. The preliminary plans also include redevelopment of current buildings on the Rush campus and other owned property.
This detailed planning for the campus redevelopment, expected to be completed next year, will include architectural, engineering and design work and will involve significant employee, physician and community input. Final plans and expenditures will require state regulatory agency approval before construction at the campus begins.
Central to the vision for this effort will be the innovative and comprehensive outpatient care facility, located on Harrison Street just east of Ashland Avenue. The building design, access and care model will create a new feeling and experience for the growing numbers of people receiving both primary and more complex care in physicians’ offices and ambulatory centers. The new ambulatory building will serve to enable new models of enhanced care delivery along with a patient experience that is second to none.
“We will be involving physicians, nurses and other clinicians to lead the planning of an outpatient building that will be as innovative as Rush’s hospital Tower,” said Peter Butler, president of Rush University Medical Center. Opened in 2012, the butterfly-shaped Tower has received numerous architectural honors and was designed to improve outcomes and address the needs of patients and their families. “By virtue of its design and flexible layout, the new building will enable enhancements in how we provide care for our patients, so that when necessary, multiple medical specialists can see a patient in one efficient visit.”
“In addition to the comprehensive outpatient care center, our plans outline numerous areas of focus, expanded research facilities, new and redesigned student housing and parking facilities,” said Goodman. “These initiatives will allow us to best coordinate services for patients, and to prepare our students for their roles as the next generation of health care professionals. We are excited to work with our stakeholders and partners to finalize plans and help bring the Rush vision to reality.”
Included in the vision planning is enhancement to university and academic facilities. Rush and the Chicago Blackhawks are in the process of acquiring the land currently occupied by Malcolm X College, which will be moving into new facilities in 2016. Rush’s current ideas have focused on how Malcolm X College site development might help address a number of academic needs of Rush University. These needs include new teaching and study space, additional research space and housing for students.
The Malcolm X site is adjacent to other Rush properties on its north campus. Overall, Rush will be looking at the best potential use of these properties and ways to connect them to the rest of the campus as a whole. Doing so offers an opportunity for Rush to be more visible, to create new partnerships and to better integrate with the community overall. Work will continue on discussing and refining ideas that will lead to more specific plans over the coming months.
“Since Rush University opened nearly 45 years ago, the way students are educated has changed dramatically,” Goodman said. “We need to invest in facilities and technology to support new models of education, while considering the experiential needs of current and future students and faculty. We will be working with our University community, the city of Chicago and neighborhood partners to define how our plans can further establish Rush as our region’s leading academic health center.”
Rush will build upon its commitment to being an engaged community partner and responsible neighbor. Rush’s previous construction of the Tower and other campus renovations in the past decade has given the organization a strong track record of success in hiring from the community, employing MBE/WBE contractors, creating new jobs and improving its neighborhood.
Rush is a not-for-profit healthcare, education and research enterprise comprising Rush University Medical Center, Rush University, Rush Oak Park Hospital and Rush Health. Rush University Medical Center encompasses a 664-bed hospital serving adults and children. Rush has more than 9,300 employees and faculty. Rush University, with more than 2,000 students is a health sciences university and is comprised of Rush Medical College, the College of Nursing, the College of Health Sciences, and the Graduate College.
Established more than 140 years ago, Rush has been committed to Chicago and the people neighborhoods surrounds its campuses. Rush’s mission has always been to provide the very best care by integrating outstanding patient care, education, research and community partnerships, all of which are designed to specifically to meet the needs of the diverse communities Rush serves.