Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital officials are hoping to get permission next month to embark on a four-year, $247 million modernization of the nearly 35-year-old facility near Lake Barrington.
When complete, the hospital would have private rooms for all patients, increased capacity of its intensive care unit and operating rooms large enough to accommodate today's state-of-the-art equipment, President Karen Lambert said.
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"It's really about serving our patients," she added. "Every patient wants a private room. It's an expectation these days."
The project also would centralize the radiology department in one location, whereas it is now scattered throughout the campus. And energy efficiency is another component of the upgrade, Lambert said.
The modernization and increase of private rooms won't significantly add to the overall capacity of the hospital, though. The only area with a recognized demand for expansion is intensive care, where seven more beds will be added. Lambert said this is one area where the hospital would like to guarantee that a bed will always be available for a new critical care patient.
Though the cardiac care center that opened in 2005 has private rooms, only half of the rooms on the hospital campus overall are private today.
The hospital has been working on the modernization plan for five years and will seek approval from the Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board at its June 26 meeting at the Bolingbrook Golf Club in Bolingbrook.
If approval is given that day, work on the project would likely begin at the end of the year, Lambert said. All patients would have private rooms within two years but the rest of the modernization would go on a little longer -- finishing in 2017.
At no time during the project will any hospital services or capacity be diminished, Lambert said. In fact, the only aspect likely to affect patients or visitors may be the gradually shifting location of parking outside.
Though most of the work will be taking place within the hospital, the external appearance will change as patient rooms are moved to the north side of the building, Lambert said.
The main part of the hospital campus opened in 1979, but subsequent additions have included the outpatient pavilion in 2001, cardiac care center in 2005 and new emergency department in 2007.