When an Air Ambulance Takes You Far Away From Home, Ronald McDonald House Charities Is There to Help
Many of the patients who use our worldwide air ambulance service are traveling, often far away from home, to receive care. Specialized care is often not available at home, leading families to seek resources in unfamiliar communities without a built-in support system. In these circumstances, the services offered by Ronald McDonald House Charities can be lifesaving.
For the past 37 years, Ronald McDonald House Charities’ core value has been serving the critical needs of children and their families. Their mission is to create, find, and support programs that directly improve the health and well-being of children. Research has shown that a family presence in a hospital helps children to heal faster and cope better. In addition, being at the hospital regularly allows parents to communicate better with their child’s medical team and then better adhere to treatment plans once they’re back home. To help families remain close to their ill children, Ronald McDonald House Charities has three programs: Ronald McDonald House, Ronald McDonald Family Room and Ronald McDonald Care Mobile.
Ronald McDonald House
The most well-known program of the Ronald McDonald House Charities, Ronald McDonald House, provides a “home-away-from-home” for families so they can reside near their hospitalized children at little to no cost. Many families fly air medical transport large distances to get the best medical treatment for their seriously ill or injured children. By eliminating concerns about affordable housing or where they will get their next meal, families can focus solely on caring for and healing their child. At every Ronald McDonald house, families have:
- Home-cooked meals
- Private bedrooms
- Playrooms for children
Some homes are also able to provide:
- Special suites for children with suppressed immune systems
- Education programs
- Recreational activities
- Non-clinical support services
- Sibling support services
Ronald McDonald Family Room
When children are receiving hospital care, the pediatric or intensive care unit becomes a second home for their families. Ronald McDonald Family Room offers parents and caregivers a place to rest and regroup, just steps away from their child, helping the children to heal faster and cope better with hospitalization. Ronald McDonald Family Room services vary by location, but generally include:
- A kitchen area with a stove or microwave
- Shower facilities
- Sleeping areas
- Laundry facilities
- Internet access
- Reference materials
- A seating area with a television
- A quiet room
Ronald McDonald Care Mobiles
Care Mobiles are 40-feet long, 8-feet wide, state-of-the-area vehicles specifically built for delivering pediatric health care services. Each vehicle includes two patient examination areas, a laboratory, a reception area and a medical records room. The Ronald McDonald Care Mobile provides preventive services, active treatment and referral services for ongoing care.
We understand that as an air medical transport service, we provide a crucial service at a very specific time, but the job of the caregiver extends long after the air ambulance flight is over. So our goal in writing caregiver resources blog posts is to educate you on resources and services available in the community. Please let us know if you have any questions or issues you would like us to address.