Patients & Families

What to Expect

As you settle into your room, you and your family may have many questions about what to expect during your stay. We prepared this section to provide you with some answers to common questions. If you can’t find the information you need, please contact (585) 276-CARE, (2273).

Understanding Our Health Care System

Q: What makes an “academic medical center” different from other hospitals?

Academic medical centers are often where the newest technologies, innovative treatments and pioneering approaches to health care are developed and used first. From administering a new treatment program to emphasizing care that centers on the needs and comprehensive well-being of patients and families, academic medical centers have the diverse resources necessary to learn from experience and deliver the care patients and families need most for their healing. Additionally, this care is usually administered by top health care providers because the brightest stars in the medical field are often attracted to the unique environment found at academic medical centers.

Training and educating medical students is another feature that sets academic medical centers apart from traditional hospitals. Medical students often accompany attending physicians during rounds. Not only does this give students clinical experience but they also learn what it means to administer compassionate health care.

As part of an academic medical center, all of Strong Memorial Hospital’s medical clinicians are clinician scholars with faculty appointments (at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry) who supervise residents and participate in the education of residents and medical students. This exchange of medical expertise and ideas creates a vibrant environment immersed in research, education, community and innovation. We call this Medicine of the Highest Order.

The result gives you, our patient, immense benefits. Whether you’re here for a routine or a highly specialized procedure, you will be treated with compassion and respect. Should you need it, we have an extensive number of specialists who will work with the rest your health care team. Our specialists provide the most advanced medical care and are experts in research. When you combine this expertise with Strong’s philosophy of developing a meaningful partnership with patients and families, the result is a state-of-the-art patient centered experience.

Q: Do I have the choice whether or not to have medical students involved in my care?

Strong is part of an academic medical facility, and having medical students involved in your care gives them valuable experience in understanding the human side of patient care as well as treating medical conditions. We want our next generation of medical care professionals to know what it takes to build a partnership with patients and families. But we can’t do it alone. When you allow medical students to be involved in your care, you’re giving them the opportunity to learn what it means to provide compassionate care for an individual. This ultimately helps you and future patients. If, for any reason, you don’t want medical students involved in your care please tell your nurse or attending physician, and they will honor your request.

Q: Who is in charge of my care?

The person in charge of your overall care is referred to as your attending physician and is responsible for leading your health care team. Your attending physician may be a hospitalist, surgeon, cardiologist or another specialist and depends on why you’re being admitted to the hospital and the type of procedure you are having.

For many patients, a hospitalist is the attending physician. Here at Strong, we have are 25 hospitalists, one or more hospitalist will provide care for you during your stay. Hospitalist teams are experts in caring for hospitalized patients and have the training, experience and availability to provide and coordinate care needed by hospitalized patients and their families. They are available to speak directly to you and are close by in the event of an emergency.

For more information on hospitalists please ask for our hospitalist brochure or click here to download

Depending on the length of your stay and how well your recovery is progressing, your attending physician may change. We understand that these types of transitions can be unsettling and we are committed to making them as smooth as possible. We are a team and share information and experiences so the next attending will be well aware of your case. Please know that we will try to anticipate and notify you about up-coming changes to your health care team. Continuity of your care and treatment plan is very important to us so we share important details about your care with our health care team colleagues when a change occurs. Your nurse or attending physician will make every attempt to answer any questions you or your family may have, so please ask.

Q: Why isn’t my primary care physician following me into the hospital?

Many of us develop a relationship with our primary care physician and feel that it’s logical for that person to be our attending physician while we are at the hospital. Likewise, your primary care physician wants you to have the best care possible. But during your hospital stay your primary care physician still has to maintain office hours and may not be as readily available to see you as much as he or she would like. For this reason many primary care physicians see hospitalists as an excellent solution. With a hospitalist as your attending physician, you will have someone who has the specialized training, experience, and availability you need as a hospitalized patient. When it’s time for you to leave, hospitalists work with discharge coordinators who are dedicated to ensuring a smooth transition of your care plan back to your primary care physician.

Day-to-Day Care

Q: Can I bring my own pillow / pajamas?

Hospital gowns are specially designed for administering medical care and pillows have a special covering that allows them to be disinfected to meet a hospital’s rigorous standard of cleanliness. We ask that you leave your own pillow at home. However, personal bedclothes may be worn with approval from the nursing staff.

Q: How do I get my linens changed?

Your linens will be changed as needed. Strong is making every effort to “go green” by making responsible decisions to reduce waste and pollution. By only having your linens changed when needed, you can help us save significant amounts of water and energy. However, if you want your linens changed for any reason, simply ask your nurse on duty who will do everything he or she can to accommodate your wish.

Family, Guests, and Visitors

Q: Can my family bring in food?

As appealing as home cooked food may sound during your hospital stay, we discourage family members from bringing food for several reasons. Food served in a hospital is made to meet your dietary needs. You may be on a restricted diet due to your condition or preparing for a surgical procedure. When you eat food brought from home you risk interfering with the diet you need during your hospital stay. Additionally, food brought from home creates lingering smells along with unnecessary waste that can be bothersome to other patients or trigger sensitive allergic reactions. The comfort and well-being of each and every one of our patients is our primary concern. However, if you feel home cooked food is necessary please speak to a member of your health care team.

We understand that families want to share meals together and we will make accommodations for patients and family members to do so. Family members and friends can make arrangements to have a guest meal delivered to your room by a nutrition services representative. Learn more about our guest tray program from Food and Nutrition Services. There is an additional cost for guest trays.

Q: Can I restrict visitors?

Yes. Maintaining a restful, healing environment is a priority at Strong Memorial Hospital. If too many visitors are creating a disruption either to you or another patient, your nurse will ask some of them to wait in the lobby where they can take turns visiting your room. Or, if you don’t feel like having visitors simply communicate your wishes to your nurse who will restrict the number of visitors based on your wishes. However, your support person(s) is welcome to keep you company at any time.

Q: Is there a discount parking rate for long-term admissions?

Yes. Parking costs $6 per 24 hour period. If you know you will be in the hospital for a long-term admission you have two options:

  1. Validation stickers may be purchased (minimum of three and a maximum of 10). The cost of a sticker is $4.50 and is good for one exit up to $6.00. Stickers do not expire.
  2. Thirty-day passes are available to immediate family members who are visiting an inpatient who has been admitted at least 30 consecutive days. A letter from a social worker is required. Please speak with the social worker on the unit the patient is located. Present letter to the Cashier’s Office (located on the ground level Room G-1405) or the Garage Parking office to purchase a pass.

Validation stickers are sold at any of the following locations:

  • Automated Pay Stations, for faster service when exiting. Located in the lobby, ground floor and Eastman Dental Center lobby, the Automated Pay Stations can accept cash, credit card or validation ticket.
  • The Cashier's Office, located on the ground level Room G-1405.
  • Ramp Garage Office Hours: Open weekdays 24 hours from Sunday at 11:30 p.m. until Friday at 11:30 p.m. and Saturday/Sunday/holidays 9:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
  • Medical Center Parking Office, located in G-6037. Hours: Monday through Friday 7:45 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. For more information, call (585) 275-4524.

Your Satisfaction

Q: How do I recognize a staff person for outstanding behavior?

If you feel a staff person has given you a truly exceptional experience beyond your highest expectations, we encourage you to nominate that staff member to the Strong Stars employee recognition program by filling out our online form.

Strong Stars cards are also readily available throughout the hospital. You can find them in the lobby, cafeteria and on the desks of every unit. Or you can ask any staff person for a Strong Stars card and they will happily provide you with one.

Q: What if I am unhappy with my care?

If you are unhappy with any aspect of your care it’s important that you let someone know as soon as possible. Should you have any concerns, please bring it to the attention of your nurse. If, for any reason, you’d rather not discuss it with your nurse you can speak directly to the nurse manager.

If your concerns remain unresolved, you may consider the options described below:

You may contact our Patient & Family Relations at:
601 Elmwood Avenue
Rochester, New York 14642
(585) 275-2644

If you are not satisfied with the hospital’s response you may voice your concern by calling the New York State Department of Health at 1-800-994-6610.

Or, you may call The Joint Commission at 1-800-994-6610 or submit your concerns via e-mail to complaint@jointcommission.org.