Client story

Rush University Medical Center bolsters patient experience

JLL sets healthcare system up to create a world-class facilities management operation


Rush University Medical Center


6.48 million total square feet


Implementation of new Corrigo CMMS; contained cost increases due to natural gas and other utilities; supported one of the best The Joint Commission surveys in Rush’s history


Chicago, IL

For nearly 200 years, Rush University Medical Center has been a part of the fabric of Chicago’s West Side. The academic medical center is world renowned for its tripartite mission of supporting outstanding patient care, education and research—with strong community partnerships as a key differentiator.

During the past five years, the JLL Healthcare/Rush Medical Center Engineering (JLL/MCE) group has worked tirelessly to overcome numerous fiscal and operational challenges, making it a trusted partner with Rush University Medical Center’s patient care teams, researchers and academic leadership teams.

Over the last year, JLL has employed a new zone rounding system, generating 3,210 work orders related to life safety and the environment of care. This allows the JLL/MCE team to be more proactive rather than reactive—by having the zone rounding team put in the work orders, healthcare providers are freed up to do what they do best: provide exceptional patient care. This was an expansion of JLL's ATG-powered tool, software that allows the JLL/MCE Compliance team to always be “survey ready” to respond to any regulatory agency’s inquiry by ensuring that the code-required documentation of maintenance is up to date.

JLL also supported Rush through the transition to a state-of-the-art computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) called Corrigo. Before Corrigo, the staff had a very limited view into the overall workings of the department, creating tunnel vision. Corrigo allows the end users to quickly and accurately submit work orders. Better yet, the end user can track the progress of the work order from origination to completion. As part of the Corrigo transition, JLL updated the handheld technology used by the JLL/MCE staff so that they can better track their work and support the critical Rush missions. In addition, with the transition to the Corrigo platform, newly developed business intelligence allows JLL and Rush to capture trends in data to improve overall performance.

JLL has employed its Energy and Sustainability Services team to support Rush’s utility savings goals. Specific initiatives have included building automation system optimization, LED lighting upgrades, steam system upgrades, and chiller/cooling tower upgrades. In the first five years of the program, JLL implemented more than 110 energy projects that saved approximately $8.9 million. During this time, JLL collaborated with the utility energy efficiency programs to receive more than $500,000 in incentives that offset the cost of implemented energy conservation measures (ECMs).

The in-house JLL/MCE staff recently organized under the Local 399 Operating Engineers Union. With this change, the JLL/MCE team is now staffed to support a group of buildings (e.g., Pro Building, Atrium, etc.) versus prior management by “trade” or shop (e.g., HVAC, Plumbing, etc.). This reorganization helped create a collaborative, team-based approach to managing the maintenance of Rush’s large, complex and geographically spread-out campus. A positive benefit of this change is that the teams can build relationships with the leaders and clinical staff within the assigned group of buildings instead of being moved around the entire campus.

Lending support for systemic change

Rush is an institution within Chicago’s West Side community and a founding member of the Illinois Medical District (IMD). The IMD also includes Cook County (Stroger) Hospital, University of Illinois Health and the Jesse Brown VA Medical Center. Rush embraces their responsibility to the community to drive systemic change to reduce social, economic and environmental inequalities within its neighborhoods. Rush’s Anchor Mission Strategy channels their economic power to improve the economic vitality of Chicago’s West Side while also helping its residents achieve better health. As part of its integrated facilities management strategy, JLL has actively identified and engaged with suppliers and vendors within the Anchor Mission neighborhoods.

Rush’s Pathways program brings in high school students from the West Side neighborhoods to shadow healthcare providers with the goal of encouraging students to pursue careers in healthcare. Last year, the JLL/MCE team was added to the shadow/rotation schedule. For the first time students in the Pathways program saw that they could have a career in healthcare that would not require years of advanced education. The students were able to see that with some technical training they could support healthcare by being part of a Healthcare Facilities team. As a result of the Pathways experience, several students petitioned the Pathways program leaders, and a hands-on internship program was created. During their internship, the selected students worked with JLL/MCE staff performing work orders and maintenance. Currently, about 15 students have completed the program.

In 2021 JLL’s Healthcare Platform created the Healthcare Pillar Awards. These awards recognized JLL’s commitment to the patient experience, risk mitigation, financial performance, Diversity/Equity/Inclusion (DEI) with awards in each of these categories plus an overall award. In 2021 Rush’s JLL/MCE staff received three Pillars, including an overall award, the DEI award and an award for financial performance. During 2022, the Rush team again earned two awards, once again the overall award and an award recognizing our commitment to the patient experience.

To enhance your patient experience, improve financial performance and mitigate risk, contact the healthcare experts at JLL.