Preparing for Future Challenges
September 2022 | The COVID-19 pandemic changed the landscape of health care. The need for a dedicated infectious diseases unit appeared on Cook Children's radar several years ago when Ebola first made its way to U.S. shores. As the hospital prepared for potential patients, clinical staff identified a number of challenges and requirements for creating the safest environment possible to care for those with a highly infectious disease.
The COVID-19 pandemic brought this need to the forefront again, and is the catalyst for a new Cook Children's Health Foundation capital campaign called Protecting Your Tomorrows.
The campaign helps fund an expansion project that ensures the precise combination of clinical facilities and operations are in pace to treat the sickest children, while protecting Cook Children's staff and the community from the spread of infectious diseases.
The expansion will include the construction of a new 6-bed infectious diseases critical care unit (CCU) and a 24-hour solutions center with dedicated incident command space. An existing 20-bed unit will become a dedicated infectious diseases unit for the treatment of non-critical contagious patients such as those hospitalized for flu, COVID-19, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and other viruses. A 32-bed medical surgical unit will be added, and the hospital's simulation lab will be relocated.
This expansion is currently underway.