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Rural Health Information Hub

Bozeman Health RV Parking Program

Summary 
  • Need: To provide a convenient and affordable lodging option for patients who have traveled from a distance to receive medical treatment in Bozeman, Montana.
  • Intervention: An RV parking program that lets anyone who is actively seeking care at Bozeman Health Deaconess Regional Medical Center stay in the hospital parking lot.
  • Results: Throughout the summer of 2023, at least one patient was using an RV parking space at all times.

Description

Bozeman Health Deaconess Regional Medical Center, a 140-bed hospital serving eleven counties in southwest Montana, had seen an increase in the number of patients traveling to Bozeman for care and sleeping in RVs in the hospital parking lot overnight, as many people struggled to find affordable hotel rooms or other lodging. To make the RV parking process more organized and efficient, Bozeman Health created an onsite RV parking program with officially-designated spaces on the hospital campus. The spots are available to anyone who has an appointment and is actively in care at Bozeman Health — for example, someone undergoing a series of treatments or appointments over the course of multiple days. Spaces are prioritized for patient use, but are also open when available to hospital staff members to use as temporary housing while they search for a more permanent living arrangement.

Bozeman Health Parking Lot

Services offered

There are two spaces officially dedicated to RV parking with an accessible power source, although overflow spots can be made available if needed. Spaces are free and are available on a first-come, first-serve basis, with a typical maximum stay of two weeks. Patients and staff must register their vehicle with the hospital before parking so that the hospital can maintain security and keep track of which spaces are available. If someone parks their RV in a space without registering, hospital security can assist them with registration.

Results

Bozeman Health RV Parking SignThroughout the summer of 2023, at least one vehicle was camped in the RV parking spaces at all times.

Challenges

Hospital administrators say they have not experienced any significant barriers in implementing the program.

Replication

Program leaders say the all-inclusive structure of the RV parking program, which includes 24/7 registration support and security monitoring, has been important to its success. Setting clear rules and regulations for the program has also been helpful.

Contact Information

Erin Brester, External Communications
Bozeman Health
Bozeman Health Onsite RV Parking Program
406.414.1885
ebrester@bozemanhealth.org

Topics
Access
Hospitals
Housing and homelessness
Recruitment and retention of health professionals

States served
Montana

Date added
February 20, 2024

Suggested citation: Rural Health Information Hub, 2024. Bozeman Health RV Parking Program [online]. Rural Health Information Hub. Available at: https://www.ruralhealthinfo.org/project-examples/1133 [Accessed 16 June 2024]


Please contact the models and innovations contact directly for the most complete and current information about this program. Summaries of models and innovations are provided by RHIhub for your convenience. The programs described are not endorsed by RHIhub or by the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy. Each rural community should consider whether a particular project or approach is a good match for their community’s needs and capacity. While it is sometimes possible to adapt program components to match your resources, keep in mind that changes to the program design may impact results.