Weiss Introduces New Senior-Friendly Emergency Room


Oct. 26th Open House Reveals New, Enhanced ER

CHICAGO (Oct. 24, 2016) – Just in time for the flu season and other cold weather-induced ailments, Weiss Memorial Hospital shares new enhancements to its emergency room with the community.

Weiss Memorial Hospital celebrated an Open House Wednesday, October 26, 2016, for neighbors to learn more about all the senior-friendly, stroke care, and patient navigation updates at the Weiss Emergency Room, kicking off the morning with a ribbon cutting in the Emergency Room.


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“As we age, taking care of our health often becomes an even more important focus in life, and emergency care is an important health resource for seniors. We see more than 23,000 visits to the Weiss Emergency Room each year and more than 16 percent of these patients are over the age of 65,” says Anthony J. Tedeschi, M.D., Chief Executive Officer at Weiss and CEO of Tenet Healthcare’s Chicago Market. “With the older population growing around the country and within our own community, we know that seniors will make up an increasing share of our emergency room patients in the coming years. We are excited to share the new enhancements we’ve made to the Weiss ER with the senior population in mind – improvements that also will benefit the community at large that comes to us for care.”

For seniors in the community, Weiss’ ER now offers enhancements that will benefit all patients to the ER:

  • New safety & privacy features: Seamless non-skid flooring, remodeled bathrooms, new privacy curtains
  • New comfort features: Pillow speakers, larger nurse call buttons, new overhead lights, new dimmer light, new televisions, pressure-reducing mattresses
  • New room equipment: Reading glasses, new phones, new recliners

With one of the shortest ER wait times in Chicago,(1)  Weiss’ ER treats illnesses ranging from broken bones to life-threatening injuries and more minor medical emergencies. For patients with nonlife-threatening illness and injury, Weiss has introduced a new tool to increase convenience for patients.

“Every emergency room sees a number of people who are coming in with nonlife-threatening emergencies,” says Mary Shehan, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, Chief Nursing Officer. “Earlier this year we introduced online ER check-in, which gives patients with nonlife-threatening emergencies the option to check in online and wait at home, rather than in the ER waiting room. This has been a great satisfier for people coming in with more minor conditions. In fact, every patient surveyed who used the online ER check-in has said they would recommend this service.”

Weiss is also developing ways to improve healthcare continuity for patients, as many patients who visit the ER report not having a primary care doctor.

“We’re adding a dedicated patient navigator to the ER team who will help people get better connected with the health resources they need after they leave the ER,” Shehan says. “The navigator will improve the continuum of care for patients and also help manage any questions they may have from their ER visit.”

As part of its treatment for more serious medical conditions, Weiss has also been focusing this year on increasing access to stroke care for those in the community, this month undergoing a rigorous survey for Advanced Certification for Primary Stroke Centers from The Joint Commission and the American Heart Association.

“We have a dedicated team for stroke care in the ER,” notes Khalid Malik, M.D., medical director of the Emergency Department at Weiss. “Getting prompt emergency medical care for a stroke is important. Enhancing stroke care access in the community will be a great benefit to seniors because your risk of stroke doubles each decade after you reach age 55.”

For more information on Weiss’ new ER and its enhancements, visit Senior Emergency Room or call (800) 503-1234.

(1) Propublica, ER Wait Watcher, link.

For more information, please contact:
Weiss Public Relations
(773) 564-7285