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The Pavilion has 504 patient rooms and 47 operating rooms. Credit: Avi Singh

As the opening of Penn Medicine’s 1.5 million-square-foot Pavilion nears, the University of Pennsylvania Health System is looking to hire more than 600 clinical and non-clinical positions.

The building is 17 stories tall and contains 504 patient rooms and 47 operating rooms, Penn Today reported. It will house the oncology, neuroscience, and cardiovascular care units, and is set to open on Nov. 1. The entire project cost $1.6 billion. 

As of Aug. 26, 114 out of the more than 600 positions have been filled, Penn Medicine News reported. The recruitment teams are focusing on hiring nurses, lab professionals, and security officers, among others. 

Since it was first announced in 2017, the design of the building has changed. In 2019, the design team ran a simulation using a 30,000 square foot mock-up in a warehouse in Philadelphia's Northern Liberties neighborhood. Actors and GoPros were used to visualize the original design plan. As a result of the feedback from the simulation, the new layout features quicker room conversion, more greeting space for visitors, and patients will be able to change room conditions with new technology.

With the new design, the three 24-bed units on a floor will be separated by two elevator cores at the midpoints. Inside their rooms, patients will have access to technology that allows them to communicate with staff and family, see their medical records, and control the lighting, shading, and temperature of the room. These rooms will be identically oriented instead of being mirror images of one another, which will make room conversion easier. 

Pavilion staff have and will continue to undergo education and training in the new building to familiarize themselves and ease the anxiety about the transition. 

“This is a huge training,” Denise Mariotti, chief human resources officer at Penn Medicine told The Philadelphia Inquirer. “[This is] the biggest one Penn Medicine has embarked on.”