Every year, thousands of patients throughout the region arrive at PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend needing specialized care not available in their home communities.
Whether it’s a premature infant, a stroke victim or a trauma patient, chances are they’ll be staying a while – as will their loved ones.
By the spring of 2019, these families will have a beautiful, tranquil place to call their home away from home, for as long as they need it.
PeaceHealth and Ronald McDonald House Charities are collaborating to build and operate a new 20-room guest house on the RiverBend campus, within just a few minutes’ walk to the main hospital.
The PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center Foundation held a groundbreaking for the Heartfelt Guest House on April 26. The crowd of more than 100 included foundation board members, Sacred Heart Hospital Guild volunteers, community leaders, donors, representatives from Ronald McDonald House Charities and PeaceHealth caregivers.
Following remarks, seven key supporters ”broke ground” with ceremonial gold shovels.
”Families come to us under a great deal of stress, especially if their loved one is gravely ill or injured,” said Jeff Larson, chief development officer for PeaceHealth Oregon Network. ”Some of our Neonatal Intensive Care Unit infants are with us for three months or more. Add in the expense and inconvenience of staying in a hotel, and it can be overwhelming. That’s why we’re so delighted to be able to offer them a tranquil retreat, where they can stay for little or no cost, as long as they need to – and be within minutes of their loved one.”
The new guest house will replace the current Children’s Miracle Network/Lions Patient Family Guest House, located on Patterson Street near PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center, University District. That guest house accommodates about 300 families each year, but it’s too small to meet the growing need – and it’s a 20-minute drive from RiverBend, which serves the vast majority of long-term patients, including Neonatal Intensive Care Unit newborns.
PeaceHealth will keep the guest house space for yet-to-be determined care services.
The new single-storey, 24,000-square-foot Heartfelt Guest House will include two wings with 10 rooms in each – one for the families of pediatric and NICU patients, the other for families of adult patients.
Pediatric families will pay nothing to stay, while families of adult patients will pay on a sliding scale – though no one will be turned away based on inability to pay.
The house, which will be operated by Ronald McDonald House Charities, will offer laundry facilities, a shared kitchen and dining area, a healing garden and a children’s playground.
The house is being funded 100 percent by donations, with expected completion in February of 2019. The foundation has raised approximately $4.8 million of the estimated $8 million needed to complete the project.
For information or to donate, visit www.peacehealth.org/foundation/sacred-heart.