Watch CBS News

Chicago hospital ER closed to new patients due to sweltering heat inside

Community First Medical Center placed on bypass due to heat
Community First Medical Center placed on bypass due to heat 00:24

CHICAGO (CBS) -- The emergency room at Community First Medical Center in the Portage Park neighborhood was placed on bypass Thursday.

This meant the hospital, at 5645 W. Addison St., would not accept any new patients—including those coming by ambulance.

The Illinois Department of Public Health said this was because of sweltering temperatures inside the hospital.

Earlier this month, staff at the hospital said they were working in 80- and 90-degree temperatures inside the ER.

"We are having to literally drown some of our patients in ice packs because we have no other way of keeping them cool," one staff member said earlier this month.

The issue was not new this month. CBS 2 addressed it with staff last year after an ER doctor shared a photo showing industrial fans in exterior doorways.

CBS 2 took the new round of concerns to administrators, who said, in part, they are in "the process of installing a permanent, brand new system," adding that "about 70% of the new system is now installed," with more parts on the way.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.