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Fisher House Program

Definition

The Fisher House Program is a network of comfortable, temporary accommodation facilities primarily designed for families of military personnel and veterans receiving medical care at major military and VA medical centers. These houses offer a “home away from home” for families during their loved one’s treatment or hospitalization. By providing cost-free lodging and various support services, the program aims to ease the financial and emotional burden on families during a healthcare crisis.

Key Takeaways

  1. The Fisher House Program provides temporary accommodations for military and veterans’ family members during a loved one’s hospitalization for an illness, disease, or injury.
  2. These “comfort homes” are typically located near major military and VA medical centers, allowing families to remain close to their hospitalized loved one during treatment and recovery.
  3. The Fisher House Foundation not only offers free lodging for families, but also provides amenities such as private bedrooms, fully-equipped kitchens, and common areas for gathering and sharing support with other families.

Importance

The Fisher House Program is essential for the VA benefits landscape, as it provides a highly valuable service to veterans and their families in times of need.

Specifically, Fisher Houses offer free, temporary lodging to families of active-duty service members, veterans, and military retirees receiving medical care at various Department of Defense and VA hospitals around the country.

This compassionate initiative not only eases the financial burden associated with medical treatments but also fosters a unique supportive environment for families going through challenging situations.

By helping families to stay together and connected during crucial medical treatments, the Fisher House Program strengthens the support network for veterans and ultimately contributes to better recovery outcomes.

Explanation

The Fisher House Program serves a vital purpose in supporting the families of veterans and military personnel during particularly challenging times. Recognizing the stress and emotional upheaval loved ones may experience when a family member requires urgent medical care, the program provides a safe, comfortable, and secure accommodation at little to no cost for the families to stay in close proximity to their injured or ill service member.

This invaluable resource not only eliminates the worry of finding affordable housing near the hospital but also fosters a supportive community for families navigating similar circumstances, helping them connect and share experiences during trying times. With Fisher Houses found near major military and VA medical centers across the U.S., Germany, and England, the program ensures accessibility to those seeking solace close to their loved ones during their hospital stays.

Family members and caregivers can take comfort in knowing that they can accompany their service members throughout the entire duration of their treatment, providing them with emotional support needed during their recovery. Additionally, these facilities promote respite and camaraderie among the residents, enabling them to create long-lasting bonds borne out of empathy and shared experience.

In essence, the Fisher House Program actively demonstrates an unwavering commitment towards the well-being and care of the brave men and women who serve their country and the families who stand by them.

Examples of Fisher House Program

Kansas City Fisher House: Opened in 2020, this Fisher House, located at the Kansas City VA Medical Center in Kansas City, Missouri, provides free, temporary housing for families of veterans and active-duty service members who are receiving care at the medical center. The facility has 16 suites, each with a private bedroom and bath, and common spaces such as a shared kitchen, dining, and living areas.

Michael E. DeBakey Fisher House: Situated near the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center in Houston, Texas, this Fisher House offers temporary housing facilities for families while their veteran relatives receive medical care. The DeBakey Fisher House has 20 suites for families, public kitchens, laundry facilities, and living areas, ensuring a comfortable experience for visitors.

VA Palo Alto Fisher House: Located in Palo Alto, California, near the VA Palo Alto Health Care System, this Fisher House offers 20 suites for families of veterans and active-duty service members undergoing medical treatment in the area. Since its inception in 2006, the VA Palo Alto Fisher House has served over 7,000 families, providing a supportive atmosphere for families during a challenging time.

Fisher House Program – Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the Fisher House Program?

The Fisher House Program provides a “home away from home” for military and veteran families to stay at no cost, while their loved ones receive medical treatment at nearby facilities. The purpose of the program is to offer support and comfort during a challenging time for these families.

2. Who is eligible for the Fisher House Program?

The Fisher House Program is available to active duty, National Guard, Reserve, and veteran families of service members and veterans who are undergoing medical treatment at a nearby facility. Eligibility is determined based on clinical need and availability of space at the Fisher Houses.

3. How can I request a stay at a Fisher House?

To request a stay at a Fisher House, you must contact the Fisher House where your loved one is receiving medical treatment directly. The specific Fisher House can provide information on availability and the required documentation for an application. You can find contact information for all Fisher Houses on the Fisher House Foundation website.

4. How many Fisher Houses are there, and where are they located?

There are currently over 90 Fisher Houses located throughout the United States and Europe. To find a Fisher House near your loved one’s medical facility, please visit the Fisher House Foundation website, which provides a directory with each location and its contact information.

5. What services and amenities do Fisher Houses offer?

Fisher Houses are designed to create a comfortable and supportive environment for families. Each house typically has 8-21 suites with private bedrooms and bathrooms, fully equipped kitchens, laundry facilities, living and dining areas, and more. Additionally, many Fisher Houses have playgrounds and spaces for relaxation and connection with other families staying at the house.

6. Is there a cost associated with staying at a Fisher House?

No, there is no cost for families to stay at a Fisher House while their loved one is receiving medical treatment. The program is primarily funded by the Fisher House Foundation, which relies on donations from individuals and organizations to provide this vital service to military and veteran families.

Related VA Benefit Terms

  • Military Family Housing
  • Temporary Lodging
  • Medical Treatment Facilities
  • Wounded Veterans Care
  • Family Support Services

Sources for More Information