The Shirley Ryan AbilityLab Melds Research and Patient Care

Shirley Ryan AbilityLab pic

Shirley Ryan AbilityLab
Image: sralab.org

After serving as the chief legal officer and assistant superintendent of operations for Niles Township High School District 219 near Chicago, John Heintz launched Lydian, Inc., a Chicago-based consulting firm that offers consultation on sustainability, economic development and human rights-related leadership matters. Throughout his career, John Heintz has balanced his professional pursuits with work supporting nonprofit groups such as the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, which recently received a new name and celebrated the opening of a brand new facility.

Located on Chicago’s Erie Street, the $550 million Shirley Ryan AbilityLab officially opened its doors on March 25, 2017. A cutting-edge research hospital, the 1.2-million-square-foot facility features an open design that enables clinicians, researchers, and technologists to work side-by-side surrounded by the patients they are trying to help. By melding research and patient care, hospital leaders believe the facility will lead to new research that can be applied in real time.

At the heart of the AbilityLab are five Innovation Centers, each of which focuses on a specific area of biomedical science, and five working labs, where teams of researchers will focus on achieving better outcomes for patients with issues related to brain function, locomotion, hand and arm movement, stamina, and child development. The state-of-the-art research and rehabilitation space also includes 242 patient rooms as well as on-site MRI and CT facilities.

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