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SCCA House & Pete Gross House FAQ

Where should I live?

You should make arrangements for the housing option that best fits your needs and your budget. We can also help you narrow down your choices. Ultimately, it is your decision.

Who Can Stay at the SCCA House

Any SCCA patient, caregiver or family member of a patient are welcome to stay at the SCCA House while the patient is undergoing active treatment. Pre-transplant patients may stay during their work-up period, but we suggest that you transfer to the Pete Gross House or other private apartment at or around day zero.

Homeless patients must first acquire an address where they can relocate to, once treatment is completed. Without a verifiable home address, we cannot house during treatment.

Why do you suggest transplant patients transfer to PGH or private apartment?

SCCA House was originally designed to address the specific needs of General Oncology patients. This patient group typically does not require isolation from others, as their immune system is not so radically compromised, as transplant patients experience. The architectural design of the SCCA House, likewise, is such that group interaction is encouraged, through commonly-used kitchen and dining rooms, Wellness room, and theatre. Finally, the rooms, themselves, are not completely suited to transplant patients, who require medication to be refrigerated, and who must generally stock up on groceries more, since getting out is a problem. The mini-refrigerators in the SCCA House rooms may not be suitable, therefore, to address these special needs of transplant patients.

If I am undergoing a transplant, but I have decided I prefer SCCA House to Pete Gross House, can I stay at the SCCA House?

Absolutely! There are no policies in place to stop you from staying anywhere you wish. However, there are housing options that remain more suitable to one kind of treatment, as opposed to another. SCCA designed the SCCA House for oncology patients who don’t require isolation. If you are a transplant patient and wish to stay at SCCA House, then you must remember to maintain as much isolation as possible, and refrain from using anything that might carry germs from person to person (sponges, towels, etc.) For instance, there are strict cleaning measures in the SCCA House kitchen, so that all people will follow the more rigid protocol set out for transplant cases – but this does not mean that everyone follows the rules. People must make these housing choices, individually, around which house is best for them. If you need help, feel free to call the Housing Department at (206) 288-7263. Or, you can email your questions to: housing@seattlecca.org. Be assured that as you spend time with your transplant team, they have good training materials and classes to help you learn everything you’ll need to know to keep yourself or your patient as healthy and protected as required.

What is the SCCA House?

The SCCA House was designed specifically with SCCA patients in mind. Patient can feel safe and secure in the House’s Infection controlled conscious environment not found in standard hotels. The House brings about a sense of community, with a resource room, wellness room, support groups, meditation room, media room; reminding patients and caregivers that they are not alone. The spacious private rooms provide kitchenettes for small meal preparation with a large community chef-size kitchen.

What the SCCA House is NOT:

SCCA House is not a medical facility. There are no aides to assist you with walking, lifting, or bathing. There are strict rules forbidding patient housing staff from any lifting activities with guests, for liability concerns. The patient houses do not have wheelchairs to provide to guests. The patient houses do have some rooms which have undergone structural changes to accommodate those who need such, but not ALL rooms in the houses are handicap units. If you need help getting up from a chair, toilet, or bed, it is your responsibility to inform your caregiver of these requirements. If you require mobility assistance, such as a wheelchair or walker, you must talk to your medical team and follow their guidance. Patient housing staffers are not trained to assist with these needs.

The SCCA House and Pete Gross House are not hotels. Because we are a non-profit, and our goal is to keep the costs of the units as low as possible for you, we do not provide hotel amenities such as hair dryers in each room, or complimentary shampoo every day of your stay. Your household maintenance, and toiletry items, are your responsibility. We do fill toilet paper after a unit is vacated, during apartment turn-overs, and when readying the unit for the next guest. However, when current renters run out, we do not refill toilet paper, paper towels, etc. The shuttle vans make a grocery run, daily, so there should be no problem in outfitting your new home, once you settle in for your stay. Look for the grocery list we devised to get started with your weekly shopping! And, if you run out and have an emergent need for something, ask the staff at the front desk. Sometimes there are donations of household items, and they might be able to help you out.

Because we do not provide some items, like hotels, we do try to have such items available for loan from the front desk. Ask, and we can provide you with an iron, ironing board, hair dryer, smaller vacuum cleaner, extra chair, blow-up bed, and more.

How do I know if my insurance plan has lodging or travel benefit?

Contact your insurance carrier directly and ask them to describe your policy’s lodging and travel benefit. If your insurance company requires a letter of medical necessity in order to approve lodging, contact the SCCA Housing Department at (206) 288-7262.

How does Washington state hotel tax work?

Washington state hotel tax is 15.6%. SCCA House is exempt from the Washington state hotel tax. Pete Gross House is also exempt for stays of 30 consecutive nights or longer.

I've heard about the Pete Gross House. Do I have to stay there?

The Pete Gross House is one of many housing options. While some patients enjoy the communal feel, nearby location and shuttle service of the Pete Gross House, and assurance that the building’s population is exclusively SCCA patients, others may enjoy a different area of town, or a more private setting that a condo or private apartment can provide. The most common reason people choose outside apartments or condos is because of pets they bring, or the size of the party they wish to accommodate.

I am on the Pete Gross House Waitlist. What should I do now?

The Pete Gross House often cannot confirm the availability of a room until a week or few days before your arrival. We know it can be worrisome to not have housing secured in advance. You may potentially want to make a reservation at the SCCA House, or a local hotel for the interim period, while you wait for a spot to become available (be sure to ask about cancellation fees). You may also want to have a second housing option in mind just to be prepared.

What if I have concerns about my accommodation?

Your health is very important. Immediately contact the property manager or owner with any cleanliness or safety concerns. The responsible parties genuinely want to hear and address your problems. Most properties want to reasonably accommodate your needs. If you are concerned about talking with them, or remain unsatisfied, call the SCCA Housing Department at (206) 288-7262.

Is there financial assistance for housing?

Housing in Seattle can be a large drain on financial resources. There are some organizations that can provide financial assistance for housing. SCCA patients can speak to a social worker for a financial assistance consultation. If you would like to be referred to a social worker you can contact (206) 288-1076.

Does SCCA House accept Medicaid?

SCCA House accepts Medicaid from Washington, Idaho, Montana, and Alaska (for lodging and shuttle services only).