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Frequently Asked Questions

Who can stay at the Lexington Ronald McDonald House?

The Lexington Ronald McDonald House serves families of children 21 years and under that are being treated by local hospitals. Limited exceptions may be made by a House manager. In addition to parents and patients, we also welcome siblings, grandparents, relatives and friends – anyone whom the patient needs around them to help in the healing process. Up to four immediate family members may stay in a room.

How do I reserve a room?

Our 21 rooms are offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Families staying at the Lexington Ronald McDonald House for the first time must be referred by a physician or hospital personnel. If you do not have a physician or hospital referral you may fill out an online referral if your child is not inpatient. All online referrals will be verified prior to waitlist placement. Families will be notified of room availability the day the room is needed. To ensure the comfort and safety of all our guests, each potential House guest must have a background check prior to arrival. Please allow 48 hours to process.

  • Check in & Check Out: If you’re interested in staying with us, talk to your doctor or hospital staff about securing a room. They will call us with a referral the day the room is needed. If you do not have a referral recommendation you may directly request a room online and we will verify the request. Families will be assigned a check-in time. When possible, guests are asked to give staff a 24-hour notice prior to check-out.
  • Required Documentation: Guests and visitors over the age of 18 will be asked to present a photo ID and be willing to submit to a background check. There are no exceptions to the photo ID rule.
  • All children under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult at all times.

What if a room is not available?

Because we never know how long a family will be staying, we cannot take advance reservations. We take names on a first-called, first-served basis. If a room is available at the time you call, it will be assigned to you. If not, your name will be placed on a wait list in the order in which you called. Often, we have many families check out the next morning, and a room will become available before you arrive. If it looks as though a room will not be available for the first night, we can assist you in finding alternate housing nearby. You will stay on the wait list until a room becomes available, at which time we will call you.

How much does it cost to stay at the Ronald McDonald House?

The Lexington Ronald McDonald House requests a donation of $10 per night per family, to help offset the actual cost of $101 per night. If this presents a hardship for the family, it may be reduced or deferred. No family has ever been, or will ever be, turned away due to inability to pay.

What are the hours of the Ronald McDonald House?

The House is accessible to families 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The front desk is staffed from from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern, 7 days a week. A manager is on duty 24 hours a day in case of emergency.

How big is the Ronald McDonald House?

The Lexington Ronald McDonald House can accommodate 21 families each night in private suites with rooms located both up and downstairs. In addition, the House has many amenities to make our guests’ stay here as comfortable as possible.

  • Play spaces: Both indoor and outdoor play-spaces are available for our young guests. However the House does not provide baby-sitting services, so parents are responsible for supervising their children whenever they are in the House or on the grounds. No child under the age of 18 may be left unattended. In addition, we have a large library of books, games, videos, video games and a pool table available for use by guests of all ages.
  • Kitchen Facilities: All families are provided with a small refrigerator and a locked cabinet space to store dry goods. A large kitchen and dining area allow ample room for all our guests to make themselves at home. Families may choose to cook or enjoy the meals prepared by our volunteers.
  • Laundry Facilities: Washers and dryers, as well as detergent and bleach, are provided
  • Chores: Like any home, all members of the family must pitch in to keep it tidy. To help the House run smoothly, all rooms are assigned a daily chore to be done by someone staying in that room.
  • Events: Guest events such as game night, story time, animal therapy, or craft time are offered periodically at the Ronald McDonald House.  Families are encouraged to participate whenever possible.
  • Quiet Hours: Families are asked to respect quiet hours between 11 pm and 8 am.
  • Smoke-free Environment: No smoking or use of any tobacco products is allowed inside the House. Smoking is allowed on designated outdoor patios.

What will I find in the guest room?

Each newly renovated guest room is furnished with two double beds or a queen bed donated by Termpur-Pedic, a private bath and a telephone. Linens are provided, but guests are responsible for their own laundry and cleaning their own room. Rollaway beds, cribs, toiletries and other items are available on a limited basis. Handicapped rooms are available upon request.

How do I get to get to the hospital where my child is staying?

The Ronald McDonald House provides a shuttle service to each medical center three times a day (subject to availability of volunteer drivers). Due to our safety policy, children and individuals under 50 inches tall may not ride the shuttle.

How long do families typically stay at the Ronald McDonald House?

Families stay as little as one night (for a follow-up appointment or testing) or sometimes months. The average length of stay for our guest families is 11 days.

Who can use the Ronald McDonald Family Room?

Families whose children are being treated at that Kentucky Children’s Hospital may use the Ronald McDonald Family Room.

How much does it cost to use the Ronald McDonald Family Room?

Thanks to the generosity of our volunteers and donors, the services of a Ronald McDonald Family Room are provided at no cost.

What is the relationship between McDonald’s and Ronald McDonald Charities of the Bluegrass?

While the McDonald’s corporation is a partner in care, RMHC of the Bluegrass is neither owned nor fully funded by McDonald’s. Learn more about our relationship with McDonald’s.

How is Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Bluegrass funded?

RMHC of the bluegrass is solely operated with funds raised through donations made by individuals, organizations, and corporations in the communities we serve. The House is not owned or operated by McDonald’s or any medical institution and it does nor receive funding through United Way or other government programs.

How can I support the Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Bluegrass?

By donating or getting involved through volunteering at the House or in the Family Room. We could not operate without generous donations from our community. Our volunteers are the heart and soul of the House – and the reason we accomplish so much with such a small staff.