MercyHealth and Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago Announce a Comprehensive Partnership

April 28, 2017

ROCKFORD, Illinois – Mercyhealth is pleased to announce it has formed a comprehensive partnership with Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, one of the top children’s hospitals in the country, to bring highly specialized pediatric services to infants and children in Rockford. 

In anticipation of the opening of Mercyhealth’s $505 million Women’s and Children’s Hospital and Medical Center Campus on Riverside Boulevard in Rockford, Illinois, Mercyhealth began collaborating with Lurie Children’s six months ago to expand its services. Mercyhealth serves 2.1 million patients in eleven northern Illinois counties and four southern Wisconsin counties.

The comprehensive partnership with Lurie Children’s will provide young patients who have complex and rare conditions access to advanced outpatient and inpatient services in areas including pediatric cardiovascular surgery, pediatric plastic surgery, pediatric urology, pediatric hematology/oncology, and 24/7 consultative and telemedicine coverage for pediatric neurocritical care, infectious disease and pediatric emergency medicine.  

"We understand the importance of having specialized care close to home,” said Patrick M. Magoon, President and CEO of Lurie Children’s. “We expect that these enhanced pediatric specialty services will be a benefit to the patients and families in the Rockford community we serve.   

Specialists from Mercyhealth and Lurie Children’s will work hand-in-hand to provide innovative, integrated care to neonatal and pediatric patients and their families. As Mercyhealth awaits the opening of its Women’s and Children’s Hospital and Medical Campus in late 2018, the partnership will continue to explore other opportunities in the future to expand pediatric services to meet the regional needs. 

 “As the area’s only Level III NICU for the 11 county region of northern Illinois, we provide the highest level of services for preemies, infants and children. We are constantly researching how we can enhance health care in the communities we serve and, over the last six months, we have been working with Lurie Children’s on a plan to bring advanced pediatric subspecialty physicians to Rockford,” states Javon R. Bea, President and CEO of Mercyhealth. “We are now able to complement our current highly-trained and well-respected pediatric subspecialists with a breadth of unique pediatric subspecialties. I am very excited we are able to bring these services to Rockford for our young patients and their families allowing them to focus on their medical needs without the additional burden of extended travel to Chicago except in unusual cases,” Bea adds.

Mercyhealth is one of a few Illinois state-designated Perinatal Centers outside of Chicago, providing medical direction for an 11 county region in northern Illinois. It is the only Level III (highest level) subspecialty Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) in the region caring for premature newborns that are critically ill or require surgical intervention. Mercyhealth has dozens of specialized pediatric physicians, 24/7 neonatologists and a Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) with 24/7 pediatric hospitalists. Mercyhealth recently opened a Small Baby Unit designed to care for the smallest of micro-preemies born at less than 27 weeks or weighing less than 2.2 pounds.

Lurie Children’s is the only children’s hospital in Illinois and one of only a very few in the country, recognized by the American College of Surgeons as a Level I pediatric surgery center, the highest quality designation possible. Lurie Children’s is ranked as one of the top pediatric hospitals in Illinois and number 6 in the nation according to U.S.News &World Report and is the pediatric training center for Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Last year, the hospital served more than 200,000 children from 50 states and 51 countries.

Mercyhealth was formed in January 2015 through the merger of Mercy Health System and Rockford Health System. Today, Mercyhealth is a vertically integrated, not-for-profit multi-regional health system comprising five hospitals, a wholly-owned insurance company, more than 8,000 partner employees, 600 W2 partner physicians and over 85 primary and specialty care medical centers and clinics across more than 50 communities in 15 northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin counties. Mercyhealth provides over 75 physician specialties, including neonatal and pediatric intensive care, perinatal care, neurosurgery (brain and spine), heart and vascular care, cancer care, plastic and reconstructive surgery, trauma, orthopedics and much more.