Guest House FAQs

Becoming a Resident

What is hospice and how do I know if I'm eligible?

Hospice is a philosophy of care focused on comfort versus cure.  Those who live at our Guest House genereally have a life expectancy of six months or less, and have determined — along with their physicians and families — not to seek a cure, but to pursue comfort and quality of life.

Do you have to be Buddhist to be served by Zen Hospice Project?

No. Our residents  come to us simply because they need a place where they will receive excellent care at the end of their lives. Our approach to end-of-life care is grounded in a contemplative tradition of mindfullness. We welcome and honor people from culturally and spiritually diverse backgrounds and traditions. Services are provided regardless of religious affiliation, or sexual orientation, gender, ethnicity, age, or national origin.

Where is the Guest House located?

The Guest House is located at 273 Page Street, in San Francisco. It is near the corner of Page and Laguna Streets, in the heart of the Hayes Valley neighborhood.  

Is the Guest House wheelchair accessible?

Yes.  A wheelchair entrance makes indoor and outdoor areas easily accessible. Spaciousness, wide doorways, bathroom access, and an elevator assure mobility throughout the house.

Do you have availability?

Availability at the Guest House changes routinely. Since there are several factors that guide the admissions process, it is best to begin at our Admissions Process. Contact admissions@zenhospice.org for any questions. 

Do you accept residents from outside the Bay Area?

While  most of our residents come from the Bay Area, we welcome residents from any location.

Do you serve residents with dementia?

We may be unable to accommodate the needs of residents who have a primary diagnosis of certain forms of dementia or neurodegenerative disorders. Consideration for admission would be on a case-by-case basis. In general, patients with a high level of need would be asked to have additional support from outside caregivers to assure the safety of themselves and others. Our staff are available to assist in arranging this additional support.

Are any other languages spoken?

Although the primary language spoken in the Guest House is English, Zen Hospice Project will make every effort to accommodate individuals who speak languages other than English and provide translation services.

Fees & Insurance 

How much does it cost?

The rate for residential care (room and board) at the Guest House is based on a sliding scale  and an evaluation by our Admissions Team.   Since charges for room and board are not covered by Medicare, Medi-Cal, or most private insurances (with the exception of Blue Shield of California and HealthNet), Residents must make arrangements for costs. 

Can I apply Medicare or insurance to the fee?

In contrast to home hospice services, residential hospice costs  are not covered by Medicare or other insurance programs. Reimbursement from long-term care insurance is possible, but each plan has its restrictions.   Our Admissions Team will help determine what, if any, coverage is available.

Insurance accepted:

Zen Hospice Project is pleased to announce that Blue Shield of California has extended their member coverage to include the caregiving services at our Guest House.

As of August 2013, HealthNet, a major insurance provider has agreed to consider covering their "commercial subscribers" for up to 30 days on a case by case basis. Please be sure to tell the Admissions staff if you have HealthNet insurance.

What’s the average length of stay?  Maximum stay?

In general, hospice enrollment requires a diagnosis of six-month or less to live. This is more a guideline than a fixed point in time. As long as a resident is hospice-appropriate and meets other general requirements, there is not a maximum length of stay. If a resident no longer needs hospice services, we will assist them in finding alternative placement.

Life At the Guest House

What is provided?

Each room is equipped with a state-of-the-art hospital bed, side table, lamp, recliner lift chair, and closet or drawer space. In addition, each room has a cable TV, and a clock. All residents are given ample linens and bath towels, as well as basic toileting items such as toothbrushes and toothpaste. In general, we provide all of the necessary items to assist in the care of the individual residing at the house.

Are meals provided?

Yes. A full menu focusing on organic and locally sourced food is provided to residents every day, which includes homemade meals and snacks. Basic accommodations will be made for residents wishing to store special food items. Residents wishing to cook their own meals will need to coordinate with the Kitchen Manager.

What are the rooms like?

As a Victorian house built in the 1860’s, each room has its own unique character, with high ceilings and windows allowing in natural light. There are five resident rooms in the Guest House. All are located on the second floor with elevator access.   Four of the rooms are private and one is shared.  To see photos, please visit our Guest House Gallery.

Can I smoke on the premises?

There is a smoking area provided on the back deck for residents. Cigarette smoking is not allowed anywhere inside the facility. Residents who are utilizing oxygen will be restricted from smoking for safety reasons. We welcome residents who have been prescribed medical cannabis.  In situations where the resident is unable to go outside, alternative methods of administration will be arranged.

What are your visiting hours for family members?

For friends and family: Visiting hours are from 9am to 9pm, 7 days a week. For after-hours or overnight visits, permission is required from the Nursing Director.

Can I bring my own furniture and other personal belongings?

Each room at the Guest House is fully furnished and space is provided for personal belongings, such as clothing, towels, toiletries, blankets, and other smaller items. Due to the size limitations of an historic  Victorian home, we are not able to accommodate large furniture such as dressers, cabinets, tables, or other such items. Smaller items may be considered on a case-by-case basis. Personal art and aesthetic items are welcome, space allowing.

Are pets allowed?

In general, this is on a case-by-case basis. Due to the intimate environment of the facility, there are limitations as to the kinds of pets we can accommodate. Fish are allowed. Pets such as dogs and cats are allowed on a visiting basis and should be arranged with facility staff.  In accordance with the law, service animals are welcome in the Guest House.