Celebrating 20 years of collaboration between RIC and SIH

April 17th, 2017

April 17th, 2017 marks the 20th year of collaboration between the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC) and Southern Illinois Healthcare. Top quality physical rehabilitation services are available in southern Illinois through the long-standing alliance between RIC and SIH.

SIH-RIC provides a range of care that includes acute, inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation services to treat all levels of injury- from back pain to more severe conditions like stroke.


Herrin Hospital’s Acute Rehabilitation Center (ARC) is one of only 26 nationwide that are certified for hip fracture rehabilitation by The Joint Commission.

To date, almost 12,000 patients have been discharged from ARC at Herrin Hospital since its inception in 1997.

Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC) has been ranked the #1 Rehabilitation Hospital in America for 26 consecutive years

RIC provides world-class care to patients from around the globe for a range of conditions from acute brain and spinal cord injury to chronic arthritis, pain and sports injuries. Founded in 1954, RIC has earned a worldwide reputation as a leader in patient care, scientific discovery and the education of health professionals in physical medicine and rehabilitation. It has been designated the “#1 Rehabilitation Hospital in America” by U.S. News & World Report every year since 1991 and attributes its leading standard of care in part to its innovative research and discovery, particularly in the areas of bionic medicine, robotics, neural regeneration and pain care.

Shirley Ryan AbilityLab

On March 25th, 2017 RIC moved to 355 E. Erie Street in Chicago and became known as the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab.

AbilityLab President and CEO Dr. Joanne Smith said the old name didn’t fit the new mission. “We knew the right words would help us to shift our focus from a process of rehabilitation to real tangible outcomes for patients. We declared that our vision would be to advance human ability,” she said.

The new location is the largest freestanding rehabilitation hospital in the United States. The massive rehabilitation hospital has 1.2 million square feet and 800,000 square feet are dedicated to clinical/research. “The Shirley Ryan AbilityLab is the only hospital in the world where doctors focused on solving patient challenges now work side-by-side with scientists focused on finding cures,” said Jude Reyes, chairman of the Board of Directors for the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab.


Connecting the AbilityLab to southern Illinois

The research done at the AbilityLab will positively influence the outcomes of patients at SIH. Research can drive better care, increase patient engagement and helps the AbilityLab understand how patients respond to rehabilitation therapy and treatments. SIH is the only hospital system in the southern third of the state with a 20 year partnership with AbilityLab; the nationwide leader in rehabilitation.

Last week, Verlinda Henshaw, Executive Director of Rehabilitation, Dena Kirk, Administrative Director Occupational Medicine & Rehabilitation Services, Maria Cull, Administrative Director Post-Acute Care Services, Jennifer Colboth, Rehabilitation Manager, Nancy Hayes, Rehabilitation Manager, and Julia Tiu, Rehabilitation Manager visited the new Shirley Ryan AbilityLab. Henshaw said, “This is such an amazing place. Seeing the research and therapy happening in one place is a wonderful thing. I am so fortunate to be a part of this and be able to bring this to Southern Illinois.”

For more information, please call 800.972.8859. “Like” SIH Rehabilitation on Facebook.