Chicago health department deploys Epic EHR at 3,000-bed COVID-19 alternate care facility

The Chicago Department of Public Health partnered with Rush University Medical Center and Epic to implement an EHR system across the city's 3,000-bed COVID-19 alternate care facility at the McCormick Place Convention Center. 

The new facilityACF is designed to help manage an anticipated surge in hospitalizations around Illinois related to COVID-19. It will admit low- to moderate-acuity COVID-19 patients, so Chicago's hospitals and healthcare workers can take care of more severe cases. 

Epic is providing its software and services at no cost. The EHR giant selected Rush as its partner for the project, and because the majority of Chicago's healthcare facilities use Epic's software, clinicians at McCormick Place will be able to easily access their patients' medical records. 

"Because patients will be transferred from acute care hospitals to McCormick, we want to ensure that clinicians at McCormick can seamlessly access their medical records to continue their care plans," Chicago's public health department commissioner Allison Arwady, MD, said in a news release. "We are pleased to be announcing this partnership with Epic that will allow us to build upon the robust system of care available throughout Chicago for COVID-19 patients."

Through the first phase of the project, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers set up 500 patient rooms as well as 14 nursing stations and support rooms for medical supply storage, pharmacy and housekeeping services. It will be the first operational section of the 2.6 million-square-foot facility to use Epic. The alternate care facility is scheduled to complete up to 2,500 additional patient rooms by the end of April. 

Earlier this week, the New York Department of Health deployed an Epic EHR system at the Javits Center temporary hospital for COVID-19 patients in New York City. 


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