Admissions to MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital

Dr Emma Nally talks with a patient at MedStar National Rehabilitation Center's gym.

More than a hospital, we are a network of rehabilitative care

When it comes to rehabilitation, you want the best for your patients. So, look to the largest healthcare provider in the region—MedStar Health. We have been at the forefront of acute inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation medicine for more than 50 years.

Our multidisciplinary team works with patients to manage health conditions, improve strength, and begin the healing process with the assistance of intensive specialized therapy services. No matter how complex the condition, our goal is to work with all patients to ensure that they achieve their highest level of independence, so they can thrive at home and in their community.

To make a referral

Please call the Admissions Department at 202-877-1152.

Please fax the following information to 202-451-2692:

  • Face sheet
  • History and physical
  • Results of consultations, include PMR if available
  • Diagnostics
  • Therapists’ and social workers’ initial evaluations and therapy notes (past two days)
  • Labs and vitals (past 72 hours)
  • Current medications
  • Imaging
  • Nursing notes for past two days
  • Following providers’ progress notes

Once we review the records, you will receive a call from one of our team members to discuss the results of the assessment and help facilitate admission, if appropriate.

Admissions criteria

The following criteria must be met prior to admitting a patient to the acute inpatient rehabilitation unit at MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital.

  • Patients can be accepted:

    • With a confirmed rehabilitation diagnosis.
    • When required medical tests/procedures for diagnosis and prognosis have been completed.
    • When pulse, blood pressure, and respiratory rate are stable.
    • If no medical or psychiatric problems preclude full participation in an intense rehabilitation program.
  • On a case-by-case basis, patients may be accepted:

    • If they are requiring a 1:1.
    • With a nasogastric tube for feeding if the patient is likely to have an oral diet before their expected discharge from the acute inpatient rehab unit.
    • If they have a brain injury measured at Rancho III.
  • Patients are not accepted if they:

    • Have a chest tube, spinal drains.
    • Require TPN or chemotherapy.
    • Are on a ventilator.
    • Are on patient-controlled analgesics.
    • Requires femoral line access.
    • Require IV BP and/or IV pain medications.
    • Require telemetry.
    • Have a trach that requires frequent suctioning (more frequently than q4h).
    • Have a nasogastric feeding tube and will not be able to have an oral diet before they are discharged from the acute inpatient rehab unit. In this case, a PEG would be required.
    • Have a brain injury measured below Rancho III.
    • Are not progressing with their daily therapies.

MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital vs. a nursing home

After a serious illness or accident, you may need to choose between a rehabilitation hospital and a nursing home. It is important to understand the difference.

Rehabilitation hospitals provide a much higher level of care because they are required to offer:

Infographic outlining reasons to choose MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital

Nursing homes have none of these requirements, and usually lack the specialization and expertise of a rehabilitation hospital. MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital is located right here in Washington, D.C., and offers occupational, physical, and speech therapy, including brain and stroke injury recovery.

A comprehensive team approach

Our coordinated staff of rehabilitation experts uses a team approach so that everyone receives the complete care they need to get better. Your patient’s personalized treatment may include some or all of the following healthcare providers:

  • Doctors who specialize in rehabilitation medicine
  • Physician assistants
  • Rehabilitation nurses
  • Physical and occupational therapists
  • Speech-language pathologists
  • Psychologists and neuropsychologists
  • Social workers
  • Rehabilitation engineers
  • Therapeutic recreation specialists
  • Music therapist
  • Dietitians
  • Educators
  • Other specialized rehabilitation professionals

We offer the best in rehabilitation services, through:

  • Award-winning inpatient care, with 137 licensed beds
  • 6 CARF-accredited specialty programs, as well as an accreditation for Comprehensive Integrated Inpatient Rehabilitation
  • National Capital Spinal Cord Injury Model System 2021-2026
  • Outpatient services at over 50 sites in D.C., Maryland, and Northern Virginia
  • Access to clinical trials that may be unavailable elsewhere
  • An interdisciplinary team approach to care
  • Advanced rehabilitation technology, such as the ZeroG gait training tool and AlterG anti-gravity treadmill
  • International leaders in rehabilitation research
  • Renowned education programs for rehabilitation professionals
  • Home care through MedStar Health Visiting Nurse Association


Patient stories