During Your Stay

The visitation guidelines for adult units are as follows: 

  • We believe that families are an important part of your recovery and are welcome to be here at any time you wish.  One family member may stay overnight, please speak with your nurse to arrange this.
  • Visitors are welcome from 9:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. Limitations to number of people at your bedside will vary based on the unit and your medical condition.  If additional family or visitors would like to stay, please refer to the listing of local hotels, some of which offer a discounted rate for those visiting a patient at Penn State Hershey.

 

A Guide to Understanding Staff Roles and Titles

As a patient, you have your own care-giving team. This team works together to deliver all aspects of your care. Any one or combination of the following, though not limited to these, could comprise your personal care-giving team.

Take time to look for an identification badge on every member of the health care team. Please ask to see any badge that is not clearly visible. 

 

Provider Staff

Attending Physician: the primary physician (physician of record) assigned to your care.

Physician Resident/Fellows: a physician completing medical training who works in direct consult with the attending physician.

Medical Students:
the Medical Center is a teaching hospital; therefore, medical students, who work under direct consultation with physicians, may be part of your care-giving team.

Physician’s Assistant: a certified, mid-level medical provider who works under the supervision of a licensed physician.

Certified Registered Nurse Practitioners (C.R.N.P. or N.P.): a certified, mid-level medical provider that prescribes and administers drugs, performs physical exams, interprets laboratory studies, and provides treatment.

 

Nursing Staff

Nurse Manager: oversees all aspects of administration and patient care provided by a nursing unit and has 24-hour accountability of the nursing staff.

Charge Nurse: oversees all aspects of patient care provided by a nursing unit during a particular work shift.

Registered Nurse (R.N.): provides you with professional care, evaluates your care, administers medications, provides patient and family teaching as part of the treatment and healing process, performs physical assessments, and keeps you informed about tests and procedures.

Licensed Practical Nurse (L.P.N.): works under the supervision of an R.N. and delivers technical nursing care such as administering medications and providing treatments and wound care.

Patient Care Assistant (P.C.A.): works under the supervision of an R.N. and provides routine care such as taking vital signs, assisting with meals, giving baths, obtaining specimens, and obtaining blood samples or EKGs as delegated by the RN.

 

Care Coordination

Social Workers (M.S.W.): assist patients and their families with orientation and understanding of the hospital environment, counseling for emotional, financial, and social issues, assistance with insurance questions, and coordination of discharge services to ensure a safe and timely return home.

Care Coordinators (R.N.): the care coordinator works to maintain continuity of patient care for all patient populations from admission to discharge based on individualized patient- and family-centered plans of care. The care coordinators partner with social workers to arrange clinical- and community-based resources for your discharge.

Coping with medical bills is especially difficult at a time when you or a loved one is dealing with a medical problem or a serious illness. Our customer service team is available to assist you with questions about your insurance coverage or medical bills while you are here or after you have gone home.

As a courtesy to our patients, claims will be submitted to all medical insurance plans. You will be billed for any remaining balances after the insurance company has processed the claim. If you do not have insurance coverage or are in need of assistance with balances remaining after insurance processing, our financial counselors can assist in determining whether you qualify for a special program, payment plan, or charity.

How to Contact Us

By Telephone:
Financial counselors and customer service representatives can be reached at 717-531-5069 or 800-254-2619

Hours of Operation:

  • Monday - 8:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, and Wednesday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
  • Thursday and Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

In Person:
For the convenience of our patients, financial counselors are available to meet with you in person to provide individualized service in a private office setting. Our financial counselors are located in suite 2106 (second floor) of the Academic Support Building on Academic Drive. Visitor parking is located in the front of the building, with two spaces specially designated for visitors to patient financial services. A shuttle service is available to the Academic Support Building from various locations throughout the campus.

If you or your personal representative is not able to come to the Academic Support Building, a financial counselor can come to your hospital room or the area where you are being seen to discuss insurance coverage or questions you may have about your medical bills. This service may be requested by contacting the customer service team via phone.

By Mail:
Penn State Hershey Medical Center
Patient Financial Services
P.O. Box 854, Mail Code A410
Hershey, PA 17033-0854

By E-Mail:
HMCbilling@hmc.psu.edu

Policies

Special Services

Spanish speaking representatives are available by phone or in person. We welcome you to call us, walk in, or make an appointment, either during or after your stay, to give us the opportunity to assist you or your family members with any questions concerning the billing process.

Security

Penn State Hershey’s security department is available 24-hours-a-day, 7-days-a-week, and assists in providing protection for the well-being and property of all patients, visitors, and employees.

After dark and upon request, security staff is available to escort visitors to personal vehicles on campus.

The security command post is located at the main entrance of the emergency department. For security assistance, call extension 8711 (or 717-531-8711 from outside Penn State Hershey).

 

Safety

Fire Alarms
If you hear a fire alarm, please stay calm, remain in your room, and follow the instructions given by the nursing staff.

To ensure your safety, Penn State Hershey periodically conducts fire drills. These drills help educate Penn State Hershey staff with emergency practices.

Preventing Falls
Your cooperation will reduce the risk of an accidental fall during your stay with us. 

  • Follow instructions given by your physician or nurse concerning whether you may get out of bed, use the bathroom, walk in the hallways, etc.
  • When you need help, notify your nurse by using a call button. Buttons are located at every patient bed and in each bathroom in the patient-care areas.
  • Use any ambulatory device that you need, such as a cane, crutches, wheelchair, or walker.
  • Wear non-skid slippers while walking in your room and in the Medical Center. Please do not walk barefoot. 

During your stay, it may be necessary to place you on “fall precautions,” so that extra measures are taken to ensure your safety. Your nurse will provide additional information to you if this is required for your care.