VA Northeast Ohio Healthcare System
Cleveland VA Fisher House
What is a Fisher House?
The Fisher House program provides a "home away from home" for families of patients receiving medical care at major military and VA medical centers. The homes provide free temporary lodging so military and Veteran families who live 50 miles or further from the treating facility can be close to their loved one during a medical crisis.
Fisher Houses provide a comforting, first-class experience while loved ones receive care in an unfamiliar environment – all at NO COST to the Veteran or their families. This special support is very important during the most stressful time – the hospitalization of a loved one. Each Fisher House provides all the comforts of home – allowing families to retreat and rejuvenate after a stressful day at the hospital. While the road to recovery is different for every family, one thing remains the same – Fisher House is there to provide comfort and compassion.
The Fisher House program was established in 1990 by Zachary and Elizabeth Fisher. Today, Zachary’s grandnephew, Ken Fisher, is the Chairman and CEO of the Fisher House Foundation, and he continues the legacy of reuniting military and Veterans’ families in a time of need. “We have a mission that we have committed ourselves to, and that is to support our troops,” said Ken Fisher. “They deserve the best we have, and we’ll be there as long as we’re needed.”
Fisher House Manager
If you would like to volunteer at the Fisher House, please contact the Fisher House Manager.
Who Can Stay at the Fisher House?
All potential Fisher House guests must be actively involved in the treatment plan for the hospitalized Veteran or active duty service member. Guests must plan to provide ongoing bedside support during the episode of care and they must be family members of the active duty or Veteran inpatient who is receiving extended or episodic outpatient therapy.
Guests must reside 50 miles or more, or at least two hours from the medical center or area hospital the active duty service member or Veteran is receiving care at.
Guests must be self-sufficient and able to independently care for themselves, or be accompanied by a caregiver, as there is no medical, catering or maid service staff on-site at the Fisher House.
Guests must be able to stay in an unsupervised setting.
Guests must be willing to abide by all house guidelines and regulations including: Prohibition of smoking, weapons, alcohol or drug use; and be willing and able to clean up after themselves. No animals are permitted in the Fisher House with the exception of service dogs.
Guests must express a willingness to respect the rights of other guests and contribute to a supportive and caring environment.
Children under the age of 18 may be accommodated if they are supervised at all times by their families.
Families will only be assigned one guest suite.
Guests cannot have the following needs and/or conditions: home health, wound vac, C-Diff, running IV's, or TPN. If guests have any of these needs or conditions, they will not be eligible to stay at the Fisher House.
How Does Someone Get Referred to the Fisher House?
Referrals to the Fisher House must be done in advance by VA Staff assisting with your care (e.g. Treatment Team/Clinician, Social Worker, Facilitator etc.).
It is important to note that a referral does not equate to a reservation. The referral merely places the prospective guest on a waiting list for lodging.
The Fisher House Manager or designee will assess the referral, along with lodging availability.
Reservations are based on eligibility criteria being met and room availability.
Rooms are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis.
Referrals must be received by 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, to be considered for same day lodging.
Parking at the Fisher House is available. Due to the limited quantity of parking spaces, one spot is allotted per family.
Do I need to provide my own food and preparing meals?
Donors make it possible for us to have food available for guests who reside in the house. If particular food items are not available, guests are responsible for purchasing them. A large kitchen is available for guests to prepare their own meals.
Do I provide my own linens (blankets, towels, etc.)?
Similar to a hotel, we provide all fresh linens and towels to guests for use during their stay.
How Can I Help?
By contributing to the Greater Cleveland VA Fisher House, you can make a difference in the lives of America’s service members, retirees, Veterans, and their families when they need help the most. Our Fisher House depends on public donations to continue our important work. You may consider Volunteer Opportunities at the Greater Cleveland Fisher House or contribute financially.
For more information on ways you can donate or help, contact Fisher House staff at (216) 707-4800. Financial contributions can be dropped off at Voluntary Service or at the Fisher House with the Fisher House Staff.
Financial contributions may be mailed to:
Make checks payable to:
Cleveland VA Fisher House Social Media ToolkitBelow are the communication products to promote Cleveland VA Fisher House. Partners are encouraged to use these products as they see fit to spread awareness of this great service for our nation's heroes.