Plans for new Provident Hospital put on hold amid rising costs
The estimated price of building the new hospital has increased from $240 million to $300 million. County officials plan to tweak the construction plan and resubmit it to state authorities later this year.
Cook County’s plan to erect a new eight-story building to house Provident Hospital has been put on hold.
One of the main issues: money.
The estimated cost of the project was $240 million when it was approved before the pandemic in 2019. The cost is now estimated to have ballooned to more than $300 million.
The change in cost means the county will need to go through another round of approval from the state board that oversees hospitals, which allows for only 7% cost overruns.
Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle announced the postponement Thursday at a news conference after a county board meeting.
The plan had been to construct the new building adjacent to the current one at 500 E. 51st St. and then demolish the old one. The doors to the new hospital were to open in spring 2023.
All of that is on hold, giving county health officials the opportunity to tweak the plan and the services the hospital offers, Preckwinkle said.
“In the last three years of COVID, we have learned much. Health disparities have been amplified and exacerbated,” Preckwinkle said. “Changes in the health care landscape have also impacted the way we look at needs in the long term.”
County officials could resubmit new plans to the Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board later this year.
The project was delayed twice previously due to the pandemic and a change in leadership at the hospital.
The county operates two hospitals, Stroger and Provident.
Preckwinkle said services will continue at Provident and cited recent upgrades including a new MRI machine and enhanced services in women’s health, diabetes and cancer.
The scheduled demolition of Provident’s outpatient facility, which has been vacant for more than 10 years will continue, she said.