UPMC / Mercy Emergency Department


Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Size:  25,000 SF / Renovation & Expansion     
Program Features:
Level I Trauma Center for Central and South Pittsburgh
Super-track for rapid treatment of low-acuity cases
Emergency Department imaging
Clinical Decision Unit
Psychiatric Emergency Services


The ED at UPMC Mercy has been designed to accommodate an increase in volume. The existing facility was designed to handle 30,000 visits per year and the projected volume is expected to exceed 70,000 visits annually.  The design of the ED is predicated on patient safety and provider efficiency. A radial layout of exam rooms to maximize staff-patient observation has been extended into "ribbon" arrangement. This will readily accommodate the ebb and flow of patient/staff ratios throughout the day as volumes fluctuate.   Supplies are deployed all along the ribbon to maximize access and minimize steps.

Additional space was required to allow for this expanded service. While new footprint was not a consideration UPMC was able to make for this project, adjacent existing space was made available. The ED, of course, must stay in service; therefore the project was expanded/renovated in multiple phases so that there was never a time when there were fewer exam rooms that existed at the project onset. Six new exam rooms were built in an adjacent space, then a progression of demolition and reconstruction proceeded in five subsequent phases, each permitting access to all required support.