FAQs

Who can stay at SECU Family House at UNC Hospitals?

SECU Family House  is open to all adult (18 years and older) patients at UNC Hospitals and their family members and caregivers. Guests must have a permanent home address and must live more than 50 miles from Chapel Hill, unless their physician specifies a shorter travel time (patients/families who live less than 50 miles from Chapel Hill are allowed on a night-to-night basis if space is available). There is a limit of one room per family. Most rooms can accommodate no more than 3 guests, including children.

How can I Stay? What do I need to do?

Once the SECU Family House receives a referral from UNC Hospitals or a clinic, you will be placed on a waiting list for the day you will be arriving in Chapel Hill. If it is your first visit, Family House will contact you directly, either by phone or by mail ahead of time. After your name is placed on the waiting list, you will need to call the House between 11 am and 2 pm on the day you will be arriving to see if we have a room available. A hotel referral at a reduced rate may be made if we do not have space available. If your circumstances change, causing you not to need a room, please be sure to call the Family House back and let us know you will not be coming. That frees up a room for another family.

How do I know if I have a room?

We operate on a wait-list basis. You will need to call the House on the day you expect to arrive to find out if space is available.

Are admissions prioritized?

Admission requests are prioritized based on the medical condition of the patient and the availability of other options for housing.

Who can use the House?

Adult patients (18 years of age and older) and their families/caregivers, who are being treated at UNC Hospitals for a number of life-threatening illnesses, including, but not limited to, cancer, accidents, bone marrow, and stem cell transplant, organ transplant, burn, trauma, and serious eating disorders.

How long can I stay?

A guest’s length of stay is directly related to the patient's treatment needs. The House works with the medical and social work team to determine the necessary length of stay. Some guests stay only one or two nights, some for several weeks, and some for months.

What is the cost?

The nightly fee of $45 for a twin or queen bedded room, and $60 for a suite includes room linens, use of kitchen and laundry and the rest of the facilities. Upon admission to the House, the guest is expected to pay up to one week in advance and each week thereafter. In addition to cash or check, we accept American Express, MasterCard, Visa, and Discover. We are a nonprofit, and our low rates are supported by generous donors. Guests may apply for financial assistance by contacting the Director of Operations, Janice Ross, at janice@secufamilyhouse.org.

What are the rules?

Our primary concern is that the guests staying at the House are safe and comfortable. We must therefore ask that each guest abide by the simple rules that we have established. Disruptive or irresponsible behavior that threatens the security or well-being of our guests will not be tolerated and will result in the loss of House privileges. We do expect that you will use the House for the purpose for which it is intended–to enable you to receive treatment or visit your family member being treated at UNC Hospitals. We also expect that you will help keep the house clean and neat, including your room.

There is no smoking inside the House or anywhere on the grounds. Upon admission to the House, all guests will receive more information on specific rules and consequences of disruptive behavior.

May I have visitors?

You may have visitors. Visiting hours are 9 am to 9 pm. Visitors are not allowed in guest rooms unless the patient is in a suite. Houseguests are welcome to receive visitors in any of the public rooms after the visitor signs in and receives a visitor badge.

Is transportation provided?

UNC Hospitals provides free bus service (HU Express) and shuttle service to and from UNC Hospitals. The shuttle provides service from the Family House Circle to the Hospital Circle. The bus stops in front of Ronald McDonald House, which is next door. The shuttle and city buses in Chapel Hill are free. A complete schedule can be picked up at the front desk or by clicking here: Current Bus and Shuttle Schedule

May I get mail at the House?

You may receive mail at the House. Letters should be addressed to:
Last Name/Family Name
c/o SECU Family House
Room #
123 Old Mason Farm Road
Chapel Hill, NC 27517

If you are going to be in Chapel Hill for an extended stay, please talk with the House Manager about the best way to get your mail at home or please have a neighbor collect and send your mail once per week.

Is the House for patients or just family members/caregivers?

SECU Family House is for patients and family members/caregivers. SECU Family House is not a medical facility and no one is trained to provide treatment on site; however, patients are welcome to have home health agencies provide care here.