Gaylord Hospital, a 137-bed long-term care hospital in Wallingford, has opened its new on-campus guest accommodations to better serve patient families who are traveling from out-of-the-area to provide their loved ones with the best care possible.
The MoraLee Guest Cottages is a one-story building on Gaylord’s 400-acre Wallingford campus comprised of four, 400-square-foot units, each configured in a hotel suite layout. Each unit is individually accessible through a central, handicapped-accessible entrance and will be equipped with amenities including a microwave, mini-refrigerator, and Wi-Fi. The building is located only seconds from the hospital for easy access to hospitalized loved ones.
The MoraLee Guest Cottages was made possible through the support of many donors, including a leadership gift from Linda Morasutti and her husband, Robert Lee, and a generous donation from The Maximillian E. and Marion O. Hoffman Foundation. In recognition for their donation and guidance, MoraLee was named after Morasutti and Lee, and the existing Crockett House has been renamed as the Maximillian E. and Marion O. Hoffman Foundation Guest Cottage. Donor support also enabled the hospital to update and renovate the Hoffman Foundation Guest Cottage in tandem with the construction of the MoraLee Guest Cottages.
Tara Knapp, Vice President of Development, Marketing and Public Relations, explained that in recent years an increase of out-of-area and out-of-state patients created a demand for the existing one-family on-campus guesthouse that the hospital could not accommodate.
“The house was often full, and we had to turn people away. Our out-of-area footprint has increased modestly, but the MoraLee Guest Cottages also exist because even a daily commute from Connecticut’s more far-reaching towns to Wallingford during a time of high-stress can be difficult with traffic and New England weather. Families want to be as close as possible during the most acute phase of a loved one’s hospitalization.”
Knapp said that the construction was also a forward-thinking move to increase guest capacity for the future. “People aren’t as regionally focused as they were a decade ago,” she said. “The sophisticated health care consumer of today and of the future is seeking out the best care with the best outcomes, and they are willing to travel to find it. Offering onsite housing is another way that we are extending our level of care beyond the patient room and make an already stress-filled situation for families a little less taxing.”
“Gaylord believes that families play a central role in helping their loved ones as they heal from life-altering illness or catastrophic injury. The emotional support of having a family member close by helps patients relax and recover more quickly.”
Knapp explained that the MoraLee Guest Cottages was strategically built next to the existing guesthouse to create a neighborhood of guest housing. The interior was designed to encourage families to interact and support each other.
“It was important to our staff and our lead donors to design an extended entryway in MoraLee that encourages families to gather in a central place where they can sit, listen, and support each other and be reassured that they are not alone,” she said.
Gaylord Specialty Healthcare, headquartered in Wallingford, is a not-for-profit long-term 137-bed specialty hospital that provides care and treatment of people with complex medical and intensive rehabilitation issues. Gaylord also operates outpatient therapy centers in Wallingford, North Haven, and Cheshire. For the latest news or more information go to their website at www.gaylord.org.