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Go Behind Chicago Med's Filming Locations With A Co-Executive Producer

Niki Delone took NBC Insider behind the scenes of the real-life hospital, doctors' homes, and more.

By Jessica White

The cinematic magic of any medical drama is largely impacted by its unique hospital setting, and there's no place like Chicago Med

How to Watch

Watch Chicago Med Wednesdays at 8/7c on NBC and next day on Peacock.

Dick Wolf's Chicago-based medical drama is a tour-de-force of action , and each wing of the hospital brings unique challenges. While Sharon Goodwin (S.Epatha Merkerson) runs a tight ship on the show, it is the Chicago Med producers who work tirelessly to make "Gaffney Medical Center" run smoothly. The place feels like a real-life hospital, largely thanks to the efforts of a hard-working team of production designers. 

RELATED: Where to Watch Chicago Med

In an interview with NBC InsiderChicago Med producer Niki Delone shed light on what it takes to bring the action of the NBC nail-biter to life.

Sharon Goodwin and Maggie Lockwood on Chicago Med episode 519

Where is the hospital seen on Chicago Med?

While the inspiring locale for Gaffney Medical Center is Chicago's Rush University Medical Center, the majority of filming takes place at Cinespace Film Studios.

"We have three separate permanent medical sets on three stages," Delone explained. "One is the ICU set, another is the Surgical Floor, which includes the OR/CT Scan Room, Post Op, and the Nurses' Station. And the third is the one the audience sees most often — our Emergency Room set."

As for the external shots on Chicago Med (think Dr. Daniel Charles (Oliver Platt) strolling into work holding a coffee), most of those scenes are filmed at a popular convention center in downtown Chicago. 

"We shoot exteriors at Rush [University Medical Center] occasionally, so we have been there," Delone shared. "Our exterior hospital set is actually McCormick Place."

Actors and crew on set in between takes of Chicago Med Season 1 Episode 4

Do Chicago Med cast or crew visit Chicago-area hospitals for inspiration?


The goal of any medical drama is to bring viewers inside the chaotic world of a hospital, and Chicago Med doesn't leave room for disappointment. Production not only visits various Chicago hospitals to maintain believability, but they also have on-set consultants to help make sure everything is as realistic as possible. 

"Our two trauma surgeons that consult on the show work at Cook County Hospital," Lenore explained. "We visit them often and most of our cast has shadowed them so they really get a feel for what it is like to work in a busy emergency room. The idea for our bunk room [in Season 9] was adapted from a visit to the hospital."

The crew preps lighting in an ER room for a scene during Chicago Med Season 1 Episode 11

How do producers choose locations to represent Chicago Med characters' homes?

From cozy homes to luxury apartment buildings overlooking Lake Michigan, the various streetscapes of Chicago Med help contextualize the characters’ varying lifestyles. For producers, that means selecting exteriors that will accurately reflect the diverse economic landscape of the Windy City.

RELATED: What's Happened to Sharon Goodwin on Chicago Med?

"We do pick locations based on the economic status of the characters and sometimes the actors themselves have input," Delone shared. "Goodwin’s house, in early seasons, was in Hyde Park, which is where the Obamas' house also is. And Dr. Charles’ house is a bit closer to work and the city."

Dennis Washington and Bert Goodwin shakes hands

What are some of the most iconic Chicago landmarks seen on Chicago Med?

Chicago Med takes pride in its Windy City location and, while the characters spend most of their time at work, every now and then fans get to see city's many iconic landmarks and neighborhoods.

"We love it when we get a chance to go on location, especially since we are in the Emergency Room set on stage so often," Delone said. "We like to change it up. This season we shot several scenes downtown by the Chicago River, which was a lot of fun and beautiful at night. Then we followed it up the next episode shooting a car crash in a neighborhood in Logan Square. So, we really try to show some variety."

Production also spends significant time filming external scenes outside of Gaffney. "We usually go on location twice per episode," she explained.

Chicago Med 113 Skyline

Where is Molly's Pub on Chicago Med filmed ?

Frequented by many Chicago Med doctors and nurses once their shifts are done, Molly's was inspired by and originally filmed at the real-life Bucktown establishment Lottie's Pub.

But after the show became really popular, One Chicago production recreated Lottie's unique charm at a stage set at Cinespace Studios to avoid service disruptions.

In NBC Insider's chat with Chicago Fire producer Demetra Diamantopoulos, she revealed that production still pays the occasional visit to Lottie's. 

"While we have a stage set based on Lottie’s at our studio, we still film exteriors at the real Lottie’s from time to time..." Diamantopoulos revealed. "They were chosen, way back when, for their quintessential Chicago look, inside and out. Bucktown is one of our favorite Chicago neighborhoods."

Dean Archer, Ethan Choi, and Gerald Simmons make a toast at Molly's bar during Chicago Med Season 8 Episode 1.

Watch Chicago Med on NBC and Peacock.