Getting Care

Inclement Weather Guidance for Patients

Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC) may change its operating status due to inclement weather conditions. A change in operating status could be a:
  • delayed opening 
  • early closure 
  • full-day closure 
A change in operating status may affect outpatient appointments or scheduled surgeries. Emergency and inpatient services are always available, regardless of the weather. If you have a scheduled appointment or surgery during inclement weather conditions, please check the hospital’s operating status before leaving your home.

Frequently Asked Questions 

How can I check the hospital’s operating status?

When will changes to the hospital’s operating status be published?

If the hospital is CLOSED, what does that mean for my scheduled outpatient appointment or surgery on that day?

If the hospital has a DELAYED OPENING, what does that mean for my scheduled outpatient appointment or surgery?

When can I expect to be notified if my scheduled appointment has to be rescheduled?

My appointment is supposed to be rescheduled due to inclement weather, but I have not received a phone call.  What should I do?

What if I have an URGENT need and must be seen today?

What if I have an EMERGENCY and must be seen right away?

 

1.    How can I check the hospital’s operating status?

WRNMMC follows the operating status determined by the Office of Personnel Management.  There are many ways you can check the hospital’s operating status, including:

Online:

Phone:

  • OPM Status Line:  202-606-1900
  • Hospital Status Line:  301-319-8707
  • Hospital Operator:  301-295-4000

Text Alerts:

  • Nixle: Text WRBALERT to 888-777 to receive notifications about changes to the hospital’s operating status.

Local Television and Radio Stations

2.    When will changes to the hospital’s operating status be published?

Delayed arrivals and full-day closures are updated by 5:00am on our public website and social media sites:
•    walterreed.tricare.mil
•    twitter.com/WRBethesda
•    facebook.com/WRBethesda
Early closures will be posted to these sites as soon as the decision has been made. In the event of inclement weather, please check these sites before leaving your home.

3.    If the hospital is CLOSED, what does that mean for my scheduled outpatient appointment or surgery on that day?

All outpatient appointments and scheduled surgeries will be rescheduled. Clinic staff will contact you to reschedule for a time that is most convenient for you.
Please note, our emergency and inpatient services are always available, regardless of the weather or operating status. These services include:

  • Emergency Room
  • Inpatient Care
  • MICC/Labor and Delivery
  • Main Operating Room (scheduled Wounded Warrior and Emergency cases only)
  • Laboratory, Radiology, Pharmacy (for inpatients and emergencies only)
  • Inpatient Chemotherapy and Radiation Therapy
  • Inpatient Dialysis
  • Inpatient Nutrition and Main Dining Room
  • Patient Administration
  • Command Duty Office

4.    If the hospital has a DELAYED OPENING, what does that mean for my scheduled outpatient appointment or surgery?

  • For a 1-hour Delayed Opening: All outpatient appointments before 9:00 a.m. will be canceled and rescheduled. Surgeries will take place on time. You are advised to call 301-295-2560 to confirm surgery status before leaving your home.
  • For a 2-hour Delayed Opening: All outpatient appointments before 10:00 a.m. will be canceled and rescheduled. Surgeries will take place on time. You are advised to call 301-295-2560 to confirm surgery status before leaving your home.

5.    When can I expect to be notified if my scheduled appointment has to be rescheduled?

We will make every effort to notify you at least 24 hours before your scheduled appointment. However, sometimes that may not be possible. You will receive a phone call from clinic staff, the hospital’s automated messaging system, or our mass notification system. Calls from our mass notification system will appear as 301-319-8707 on your caller ID.

6.    My appointment is supposed to be rescheduled due to inclement weather, but I have not received a phone call.  What should I do?

If you haven’t received a phone call, the hospital may not have your current phone number. You can update your phone number 24/7 by calling Patient Administration at 301-295-2126. Once we have reopened, you can call to reschedule your appointment at 855-227-6331 from 6:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.

7.    What if I have an URGENT need and must be seen today?

You need urgent care when you have a health concern that does not threaten life, limb or eyesight, but needs treatment within 24 hours to prevent a more serious health risk. If you’re unsure if you need urgent care, contact the Nurse Advice Line at MHSNurseAdviceLine.com (web/video chat) or 1-800-TRICARE (874-2273). If you need a referral, the registered nurse will be able to assist you.

8.    What if I have an EMERGENCY and must be seen right away?

An emergency is defined as a sudden, unexpected, serious medical condition or worsening of a condition that poses a threat to life, limb or sight, and requires immediate treatment. If you have a medical emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room. Please remember that our Emergency Room is always open, regardless of the weather.

Contact

Phone

Toll Free: 800-526-7101
Local: 301-295-4000

Don't forget to keep your family's information up-to-date in DEERS.