How To Stay

Ronald McDonald House

Only two criteria are required for families to be eligible to stay at the Ronald McDonald House in Madison. The first is that the patient is 18 years old or younger at the time of referral. The second is that the patient’s family lives at least 35 miles from the Ronald McDonald House. Each family is allowed one room.

A referral from an accredited healthcare facility in Madison is required for the initial stay. However, a referral is not necessary for subsequent stays if the patient is the same family member as the previous stay(s). A new referral is only needed if the patient is different.

Currently, we serve families of children being treated at specific partner healthcare facilities, including the UW Health Hospitals and Clinics (American Family Children’s Hospital, the Waisman Center, and UW Hospital), SSM Health (St Mary’s Hospital & Davis Duehr Eye Clinic), UnityPoint Health (Meriter Hospital & Meriter Child & Adolescent Psychiatry), Central Wisconsin Center and Mendota Mental Health. If your child is being treated at one of these facilities, you may be eligible to stay with us.

Once a referral has been made, the family is placed on a list of anticipated arrivals to stay at the Ronald McDonald House. The length of our guests’ stays is often indeterminant, so we do not always have rooms available, even when a referral has been made. Free accommodations may be provided at one of our hotel partners if the Ronald McDonald House is full.

On the morning of your anticipated arrival, please call the House after 9:00 AM, and we will have a better idea of our availability to accommodate incoming families.

Ronald McDonald Family Room

Located on the 3rd floor of SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital in Madison, the Ronald McDonald Family Room is open to parents or adult guardians of a child hospitalized in the pediatric unit or neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and their guests.

We welcome healthy siblings, but children under age 14 must be supervised by a parent while in the Family Room.

If you wish to stay overnight in one of the sleep rooms notify a Family Room volunteer, nurse or hospital social worker. Your name will be added to the daily room request list. Please sign up by 2:00 pm each day. If you are assigned a room, you will be given information on the check-in and check-out time. The capacity of our sleep rooms is limited to two adults per room. Children are not permitted for overnight stays. Each family is allowed one room.

If you require longer-term accommodation and live outside the greater Madison area, please contact your designated hospital social worker to inquire about a referral to the Ronald McDonald House.