Reed Construction Converts Lobby into Triage Center at Rush University Medical Center

Rush University Medical Center is at the epicenter of coronavirus treatment in Chicago. Constructed in 2012, Rush Tower was Chicagoland’s first hospital specifically designed to combat infectious diseases like COVID-19. When it became clear this pandemic was going to afflict Chicagoans in a devastating way, Rush collaborated with Reed to convert their main lobby into a triage center for non-coronavirus patients.

Reed Construction’s relationship with Rush spans 4 decades, during which time they have relied on Reed to respond to numerous emergency construction projects, both large and small. In the present case, Reed was allotted only 7 days to convert the Brennan Pavilion into a clinical area complete with nursing stations and partition screens, as well as additional chairs, beds, and waiting rooms.

At Reed Construction, we are proud to serve our healthcare communities during these times. Additionally, we recognize there is a great responsibility with being an “essential infrastructure” industry during Governor Pritzker’s shelter in place executive order. Reed has been at the forefront of implementing additional safety precautions on all of our jobsites. We continue to fully comply with CDC social distancing guidelines including staggered shifts for our trade partners and limiting non-essential workers on site. Further, we provide additional hand sanitizing stations, infrared temperature testing, and daily deep cleans of project sites.

In these unprecedented times, communication between the Reed community and our external partners is critical to running a safe and successful jobsite. Through daily calls and virtual OAC meetings, we are able to address any potential challenges and propose proactive solutions. Reed’s Field Operations Manager, Robert Hetzel, weighs in on the importance of frequent communication: “The trust factor with our teams has been paramount in how we are succeeding during this time.” He goes on to share, “we are in daily contact with our teams to understand any new challenges they are facing in this environment and how to help implement any new changes to the process to promote safety.”

Globally, we are operating in uncharted territory. At Reed, we are looking back through our 127-year history to draw inspiration from our predecessors’ tenacity and determination to overcome obstacles. As a company, as a city, and as an international community, we have endured numerous devastating events. While so much of this evolving pandemic is out of our control, we must remember that we can control how we react, adapt, and implement positive changes. We would be remiss if we did not publicly acknowledge our gratitude for all of the healthcare workers and first-responders fighting COVID-19 on the frontlines. We urge everyone to stand united as we face this pandemic together.