The Old Cook County Hospital

Milestones in Healthcare 1835-1961

Milestones in Healthcare 1961-1999

Since the 1800’s, Cook County Hospital has provided comprehensive primary, specialty and tertiary healthcare services to residents of the county with the second largest population in the United States. The hospital is nationally known for its expertise and breadth of services, including its Level 1 Trauma Center, Burn Unit, and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, the largest in the Midwest. It is also recognized for its centers of excellence, which include, among others: asthma, cancer, maternal and infant health, and infectious diseases. Providing a full spectrum of specialty and sub-specialty services, Cook County Hospital meets the wide-ranging medical needs of a diverse population.These accomplishments come at a time when Cook County Hospital continues to enhance its services, including 155,000 adult and pediatric emergency room visits, 4,5000 trauma admissions and 13,000 surgical procedures in a year. The hospital is one of ten State of Illinois designated perinatal centers for high-risk maternal and infant services. Cook County Hospital has also played a key role in the Cook County Bureau of Health Services’ expansion of care for high-risk mothers and infants to a number of hospitals and facilities, including provident an d Bethany Hospitals. This outreach effort assures both high-quality care and referrals back to the hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Cook County Hospital has been a driving force in Bureau-wide cancer prevention and treatment services. Bureau institutions treat more cancer every year than any other health system in Chicago. This initiative has particularly targeted breast and prostate cancers, illnesses disproportionately affecting the patient population using the Bureau system. For example, 30% of he women with breast cancer in the country are treated at Cook County Hospital, as are 10% of the women in the State of Illinois who experience cervical cancer. As a result, in 1999, the Bureau established a Women’s Cancer Center located at Cook County Hospital to provide comprehensive medical and social support services. The hospital also installed a Sterostatic Biopsy Unit to allow for timely diagnosis, with utilization increasing 165% in the last three years.

A new imaging center, which opened in the fall of 1998, offers the latest in MRI and Cat Scan imaging, which are particularly helpful in facilitating early cancer detection., The separation of inpatient and outpatient imaging services also allows for more efficient and timely scheduling.

Because half of the admissions to the Trauma Unit come as a result of assaults, and the majority of those due to gun violence, Cook County Hospital staff members have vigorously pursued efforts to reduce violence. Utilizing a task force model led by the Department of Trauma, the hospital has undertaken several initiatives, This includes a violence prevention training curriculum, designed with the assistance of other Bureau of Health Care affiliates and partners. The goal of the project is to educate Bureau employees about methods to recognize risk factors associated with violence and to develop tools to lessen its occurrence. Members of a Cook County Hospital violence prevention task force helped to develop the Chicago Violence Prevention Strategic Plan convened by the Chicago Department of Public Helath. Hospital staff members also work on the Cook County Hospital Crisis Intervention Project, which focuses on assisting victims of domestic violence.

With a tradition of commitment that dates back to the construction of the first Cook County public hospital in 1866, Cook County Hospital remains a model for public hospitals throughout the country. It can count numerous contributions ot the advancement of medicine, indluding opening the world’s first blood bank in 1937, the first Cobalt-beam Therapy Unit in 1953, the first Trauma Unit in the United States in 1966, and the first AIDS/HIV clinic in Chicago in 1983.

Acclaimed for its innovative research, Cook County Hospital also manages an active residency training and education program. The residency Program is academically affiliated with Rush Medical College.

Despite a rapidly changing healthcare market, Cook County Hospital has remained steadfast in its public health mission as a asfety net facility. Over the years, the compassionate care provided at Cook County has earned the loyalty of many multi-generational users who value the staff for their commitment and expertise.

Cook County Hospital Distinguishing Features

Trauma Unit
Burn Unit
Neonatology/Perinatal Center
Adult & Pediatric Emergency Rooms
Ambulatory Care Clinics
Emergency Medicine
Same Day Surgery

Cook County Hospital 1999 Statistics

Number of Staffed Beds 598
Admissions 23,622
Babies Born 1853
Neonatology 7,794
Trauma 5,482
Burn 176
Operative Procedures 13,207
Pediatric Emergency Room Visits 34,647
Ambulatory Screening Clinic 78,453
Fantus Health Center Visits 402,448
Adult Emergency Room Visits 113,677
Open Heart Surgeries 259
Number of Employees 4,959
Cook County Hospital
1835 West Harrison Street
Chicago, IL 60612
(312) 864-6000
Johnny C. Brown, Chief
Cook County Hospital
phone: (312) 864-6000Carolyn Lopez M.D. & Dr. Linda Rae Murray M.D., Chief
Cook County Bureau of Health Services
phone: (312) 864-6820Todd H. Stroger, President
Cook County Board of Commissioners
phone: (312) 603-6400
fax: (312) 443-4397

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