Back to articles

Ukiah Valley Medical Center offers free valet parking

New Service

UKIAH, CA – It might not be something we’re used to in Mendocino County, but Ukiah Valley Medical Center (UVMC) is now offering free valet parking in an effort to address the need for more convenient and safe parking with the start of the campus expansion project.

“The goal for the new service is to improve the patient experience¬,” says Gwen Matthews, president and CEO for UVMC. “This is just one of several new things we are implementing to improve their experience. Our patients and their families who come here are filled with so many questions while worrying about their loved ones. Finding a parking spot is the last thing people should have to worry about.” 

The service, which started October 12, is available at the main entrance of the hospital (Family Birth Center entrance) from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Patients and visitors can use the service as well as employees of the hospital. 

David Weis, associate vice-president for operations explained that the idea behind offering free valet parking came through one of our patient experience focus groups which was created to foster ideas to help us deal with construction of our new emergency department and intensive care unit. “With our expansion project in full swing, it has reduced the number of parking spaces significantly. Our staff has also identified this need and we have been trying to find a way to address this. We are committed to serving our community to the best of our ability and this is the right thing to do,” says Weis. 

Weis adds that by launching this new service, UVMC can further provide patients and their families convenient parking which is especially helpful for the elderly and disabled. “With the recent changes to our campus, it can be confusing for some patients and their families. Valet parking provides them with a safe, secure and convenient way to get to appointments or see their loved ones quickly while avoiding the inconvenience of looking for parking and then walking significant distances.”
With the colder weather, Weis explains it’s a great time to start the new service. “We wanted to make sure this service was in place before winter comes so that visitors and patients would not have to walk too far in the cold or rain to park their cars.”

Parking attendant Andrew says, “We’ve had some patients and visitors who are elderly or have a hard time walking, and they said they are very thankful for the service,” Since the idea is considered “new” at UVMC, Andrew explained how it works. “They pull up, give us their keys and I park their car. They get a voucher with their number printed on it for their records. Once they are done with their appointment, they can text a cell number with the voucher number and I will let them know how long it will take to retrieve their vehicle. Usually, their car is ready and waiting for them by the time they make it to the main entrance.”  

The valet service is the latest in patient and visitor amenities offered by the hospital focused on improving the patient experience. UVMC also offers other amenities such as massage for patients and their family members, quiet packs for recovering patients which are filled with a lavender packet, lotion, ear plugs, and a sleep mask. This is in addition to other special touches such as beautiful artwork of nature and local scenery now displayed throughout the hospital. 

“These are little things that can make a big difference. Our goal is to put ourselves in our patient’s shoes and think about what would make them more comfortable” added Weis. 

--  UVMC  --

Ukiah Valley Medical Center, part of Adventist Health, a faith-based, not-for-profit integrated health care delivery system serving communities in California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington. Our workforce of 28,600 includes more than 20,500 employees; 4,500 medical staff physicians; and 3,600 volunteers. Founded on Seventh-day Adventist health values, Adventist Health provides compassionate care in 19 hospitals, more than 220 clinics (hospital-based, rural health and physician clinics), 14 home care agencies, seven hospice agencies and four joint-venture retirement centers. We invite you to visit www.uvmc.org for more information.