What is ACCESS?
ACCESS, a service of The Auxiliary of Good Samaritan Hospital, stands for “A Caring Community of Education, Services and Support”. ACCESS supports families of critically ill babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) by providing the families with free services including home stays, transportation, food, in-hospital childcare assistance, and multilingual educational resources. Families with severe financial limitations also receive vouchers for meals, gas, car seats and CPR.
ACCESS also provides transportation, childcare and vouchers for meals and gas to families with babies or children in Pediatrics, Pediatric Intensive Care (PICU) and the NICU Follow-Up Program and mothers with high risk pregnancies in Antepartum. In addition, ACCESS hosts bi-monthly car seat fitting stations that are open to the community.
How do families learn about ACCESS services?
Families learn about ACCESS services through information in the NICU, on the Good Samaritan website, or from a NICU professional or another NICU parent. Referral requests should be made in advance of the need for a host home stay or other service, although same-day requests can sometimes be arranged. ACCESS can be reached by calling (408) 559-2395, Monday-Friday, during normal business hours. Messages and requests can be left on the answering machine at any time. Phone options include English and Spanish.
How do families pay for ACCESS services
ACCESS charges no fees. Instead, families are encouraged to make donations if they can.
How long are babies hospitalized in the NICU?
Between 1 day and 7 months, with an average NICU hospitalization of 19 days.
What is a Host Home?
A Host Home is a room in a private home that has been generously donated by volunteers who open their homes to provide NICU parents/families with a clean, comfortable, and safe place to sleep, as well as access to a bathroom. Many hosts also offer limited kitchen and laundry use. Hosts do not provide meals or transportation.
Who are the home hosts?
Hosts are the foundation of the ACCESS Host Homes Program. Volunteer Hosts open their homes to families who need a place to spend the night while their babies are in the NICU at Good Samaritan Hospital. Requests for patients to stay with hosts are considered on a case-by-case basis but the focus is on serving the babies’ parents.
Who are the guests?
Guests are the parents or other family members of the NICU baby. In order to bond with and learn how to care for the baby, the parent/family members need to spend as much time as possible with the baby, but live out of the area and cannot commute easily to the hospital from home. Typically, parents will be the only guests, but guests may also include grandparents and the baby’s siblings. Host home stays are open to all NICU families living 30 or more miles from the hospital, regardless of income level.
Who refers families to ACCESS and are references required?
Usually, families are referred to ACCESS by hospital staff or self-referred because they have seen information about ACCESS. We ask that NICU families requesting overnights in a host home provide a personal reference to ensure that guests are considerate, responsible and independent. GSH Social Services must refer families requesting voucher services reserved for low-income recipients.
How is the ACCESS program supported?
ACCESS is funded by donations.
How can I become an ACCESS volunteer?
Check for volunteer opportunities on this site then download an application or call ACCESS at (408) 559-2395 and ask to speak with Shannon Hickok, ACCESS Director.
Send completed applications to:
The Auxiliary of Good Samaritan Hospital
2425 Samaritan Drive, San Jose, CA 95124
How can I make a donation to ACCESS?
Contact the ACCESS program office at 408-559-2395, or send your donations to: Good Samaritan Hospital Auxiliary, ACCESS, 2425 Samaritan Drive, San Jose, CA 95124. Or click on our online donation link at the top of this page!