Patient Rooms

Room Assignments

Your room is assigned based on your admitting diagnosis and what beds are available on the day of your admission. There are both private and semi-private rooms.

Calling the Nurse

A button to call the nurse is located at your bedside and in the bathroom. When you press the button, a light flashes above the door and the nursing station can tell that you need assistance. A staff member will respond as soon as possible. If someone answers your call over the speaker, please let them know if you need them to bring something to your room.

During the Night

Please stay in bed when you are ready for the night. Strange places and sleeping medicines may cause a problem if you get out of bed. For help during the night, use your call button.

Hospital Beds

Hospital beds are electric. Your nurse will show you how to properly work the bed, which is higher and narrower than your bed at home. It has bedside rails to protect you. For safety, these rails may be raised at night or during the day if you are resting, when you come back from surgery or if you are taking certain medicine.


PeaceHealth St. Joseph Medical Center is working to conserve water, natural gas and electricity. As part of this effort, your bed linen will be changed every other day. However, patient care and comfort remain our highest priority, so if you wish to have your linen changed more frequently, please tell your caregiver. In addition, if at anytime your bedding requires a change, we will promptly accommodate that need.

Room Temperature

All rooms in the hospital are centrally heated and air-conditioned. If your room temperature is not comfortable, let the nursing staff know.

Baby Chimes

You may hear brief musical notes played over the public address system on Main Campus. Each time a baby is born in our Childbirth Center a musical combination of “Happy Birthday” and “Brahm’s Lullaby” is played during visiting hours, until 8:30 p.m.


Your room has a color television set with local cable stations free of charge. Please be considerate of other patients and play television sets softly and turn off your set at bedtime.

Channel 71 has special patient education programming. Ask your nurse for a program schedule.

Televisions in Childbirth Center rooms receive the Newborn Channel (educational programming for parents). Turn to channel 17 for English or channel 18 for Spanish. VCRs and educational videotapes also are available for Childbirth Center patients.


Most hospital rooms have telephones. We also have TDD and telephone amplifiers for the hearing impaired. Dial 0 to request these services.

To call anywhere in Bellingham or Whatcom County, dial 9 and then the outside number. You do not need to dial 1. These calls are free.

To call a number outside Whatcom County, dial 0. The hospital operator will connect you to a long-distance operator who will take your billing number.

If you do not wish to receive incoming calls, dial 0 and ask that the phone be put on “do not disturb.” When you want to take calls again, dial 0 and tell the switchboard operator. Telephones can be removed for patient rest. In the Intensive Care Unit, all phone calls must go through the nursing station.

Most patient phones have voice mail. Callers have the option of leaving a message when the patient’s line is 1) on “do not disturb,” 2) busy or 3) not answered. A flashing light on the phone indicates you have a message. To retrieve messages, dial ext. 6333 and follow the instructions. 

Note: Messages that have been retrieved will automatically be deleted each evening at midnight.