What to Expect at the Infusion Center
The Infusion and Immunotherapy Center offers a wide variety of treatments for cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, migraine headaches and other conditions requiring infusion therapy. Depending on what type of infusion you receive, your stay at the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center may be as little as 30 minutes or as long as 12 hours. Infusion therapy is a difficult process for many: our goal is to make your time with us as comfortable and healing as possible, while providing you with safe, quality and compassionate care. Click here to download a pdf of the brochure, “What to Expect at the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center.” The brochure content is also contained in the copy below. If you will be receiving chemotherapy, we recommend you click here to download a copy of the booklet "Chemotherapy and You, Support for People with Cancer," a free publication from the National Cancer Institute. This informative booklet covers questions and answers about chemotherapy, side effects and how to manage them, tips for meeting with your doctor or nurse, ways to learn more and a dictionary clearly expaining many of the medical terms found in the booklet.
Some procedures require pre-authorization from your insurance company 24 to 48 hours in advance of your scheduled treatment. You will be notified by our patient access staff prior to your scheduled appointment if your treatment has not been approved by your insurance company. We will involve you in your pre-authorization process to determine the best option for you.
Lab tests are often necessary before you start your scheduled treatment: your physician will order these tests. For your convenience, laboratory service is available in the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center. Depending on the lab tests required, you may have your labs drawn on the same day of your scheduled infusion treatment or you may have your labs drawn the day before your scheduled appointment. Having your labs drawn prior to your scheduled appointment may shorten your treatment time in the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center.
Pre-Treatment Phone Call
Please expect a call from one of our staff members on the day prior to your scheduled treatment to confirm your appointment.
Because infusion medications vary in administration time and the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center schedules patients based on the anticipated infusion time, it is important for you to be on time for your appointment. Please check in at our the double doors at the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center.
Settle In to a Comfortable Room
We will escort you to your treatment room. The room includes storage for your personal belongings and a shared bathroom. A nurse will check your blood pressure, height, weight and medical history. In addition to other infusion therapies, all of the caregivers in the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center are trained in chemotherapy administration.
Family Members or Friends are Welcome to Accompany You
Our spacious infusion rooms easily accommodate a family member or friend to stay with you during your treatment. In order to be respectful of other patients receiving treatment, we request you refrain from loud talking.
Your Comfort is Our Priority—Infusion and Immunotherapy Center Amenities
- Spacious, semi-private rooms, many with pleasant courtyard and garden view
- TV in each room
- WiFi Internet access
- Entertainment cart with a computer and DVD players
- Small library of DVDs, books and magazines
- Pillows and warmed blankets
- Snacks upon request: pudding, fruit cups, applesauce, jello, frozen juice bars, crackers, chips, cookies, instant soup and assorted hot and cold beverages
- Room services meals for patients with treatments lasting more than 3 hours—your menu order will be delivered at your request
- Free interpreter services—please let us know if you would like an interpreter available during your infusion
How to Prepare for Your Treatment
Unless directed otherwise by your physician, please drink plenty of fluids the day before your infusion treatment. Consider bringing personal diversions, in case our entertainment cart items are in use by others during your treatment time: books, magazines, laptops, iPads, iPods, portable DVD players and cell phones are good choices.
Temperatures fluctuate in the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center, so please dress comfortably and consider dressing in layers. Warmed blankets are always available if you are chilly.
If your stay is less than 3 hours, you are welcome to bring snacks or a sack lunch. A family member accompanying you may wish to bring snacks as well, as their meal is not included in the treatment. In consideration of other patients, we encourage foods with little or no odor. Trendz Café is across the lobby from the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center and is open daily, 7 AM – 7 PM, for meals, snacks and beverages.
Factors Influencing your Treatment Time and Length of Stay
- Having your labs drawn at least a day prior to your scheduled appointment may shorten your treatment time in the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center. Call 425.656.4037 to schedule lab tests.
- If your lab tests are drawn on the day of your treatment, it may take 30 minutes to 1 hour to receive the results.
- In many cases, your nurse must report the results to your physician before any preparation of your medication. Sometimes, treatment may be postponed based on your lab results.
- The pharmacy will prepare your treatment medications as ordered by the physician. For maximum effectiveness, these medications will be only prepared after you arrive.
- Medication preparation time may take up to 1 hour.
- Before Treatment Pre-Medication: Your physician may order medicine to prevent nausea or anxiety. This may take approximately 30 minutes.
- Your total treatment time will vary depending on the type of regimen you receive.
- Your nurse will be able to estimate the length of time of your treatment.
Your Questions and Concerns are Important to Us
While in the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center, you may have many questions. Please discuss any questions with your infusion nurse. If he or she is not able to answer your question, it will be relayed to the appropriate staff or physician for an answer as soon as possible. If a concern arises at home, please call us at 425.656.4037 or write it down to ask at your next appointment.
We Care about How You Feel
Please be open and honest with the staff about how your treatment is going and how you are feeling. You will find that you will have good days and bad days. We are here for you and your care. Thank you for allowing us to be a part of your medical team. Our goal is to help you in any way we can during this difficult time.
At the time of your discharge, your nurse will provide you and your family with important written information about your treatment and written discharge instructions. If you are given a medication to help you relax (sedative) during your treatment, you will be required to have a responsible person to drive you home. Please arrange to have an escort available at your estimated time of discharge.
Infusion and Immunotherapy Center Location
The Infusion and Immunotherapy Center is located on the main floor of the hospital (3B), across the atrium from Admitting and Trendz Cafe. A volunteer from the information desk would be happy to assist you with directions.
Directions to the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center from the Medical Arts Center: Take the third floor pedestrian skybridge to the Medical Arts Center. Walk east down the corridor to the Talbot Building. Follow the corridor into the main hospital building, past the Administration offices. Take the first left and ride the elevator to the 3rd floor. The Infusion and Immunotherapy Center is on the right.
Directions to the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center from the South Tower parking garage: Take the elevator up to the 3rd floor, the main hospital lobby level. Walk north through the Winter Garden corridor to the main lobby fountain area. Continue walking north, past the gift shop and Admitting into the atrium area—the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center is on the west side of the atrium. Before you leave, please validate your parking stub at the security desk in the Emergency Room lobby.
Parking for the Infusion and Immunotherapy Center
Free Valet and Permit-Required, Reserved Parking
- Free valet parking is available Monday – Friday, 5 AM – 5 PM at the entrance of the main hospital building. A $2 valet parking donation is optional.
- Free, permit-required, reserved Infusion and Immunotherapy Center self-parking spaces are in Lot A in front of the main hospital. The Infusion and Immunotherapy Center will issue parking permits to those who need them.
Free General Parking is Available:
- Lot A, the main parking area on the east side of the hospital campus, near the main entrance
- South Tower parking garage—for free parking, please validate your parking stub at the Emergency Room lobby security desk before you leave
- North parking garage, across from the Medical Arts Center
Free Shuttle Service
- For your convenience, a free shuttle service runs between Valley's Oncology & Hematology Clinic and VMC’s Infusion and Immunotherapy Center Office staff at either location can assist you with calling the shuttle.