Skip to main content Skip to navigation
We care about your privacy. Read about your rights and how we protect your data. Get Details

Coronavirus Update:What patients and families need to know

We're going paperless on 8/28/20:Read more about how this will impact you and your practice.

Refer a Patient

Orthopedic Patient Traction Care with Provider

Specialty Referral Guidelines

Whether your patient needs to see a cardiologist or a headache specialist, we have referral guidelines to help you provide the best specialty options for your patients.

View our guidelines

Referring Patients During COVID-19

The health and wellbeing of our patients and staff is our paramount concern. To keep everyone safe, we have instituted strict safety regulations including mandatory mask usage, handwashing and social distancing. 

We are open and providing care to patients at the main campus and at our outpatient centers. We also offer telehealth video visits in most clinics for those who prefer to stay at home. View a full list of services that offer telehealth. Parents and caregivers can call the Bear Line at 888-884-BEAR (2327) and speak with a patient care representative to schedule an appointment.

Children’s National Specialists Are Available for Consultations

If you need assistance scheduling a specialty visit or clinical guidance managing the care of one of your patients, please contact us at the Children’s National Physician Access Line, 202-476-4880, during weekday hours. After 5 p.m., our specialists remain on-call and available. Please call the hospital operator at 202-476-5000 to reach them.  


  • Physician Access Line. Call 202-476-4880, Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Hospital Operators. Call 202-476-5000 Monday – Friday from 5 p.m. – 8 a.m. Available all day Saturday and Sunday.
  • Emergency Department Transfer Center/Direct Admit. Call 202-476-LIFE (5433).
  • Physician Referral Line. Call 202-476-4418.
  • Fax a referral. You can fax a referral to 202-476-7651. Learn more about this process.
  • International patients. To refer an international patient, please contact us at +1-202-476-5778 or email us.

Contact your physician liaison for more information.

Criteria and Common Conditions for Admission

Your evaluation of the patient on the day of the referral will help us understand your patient’s needs. Some common conditions for inpatient referral include:

  •     Failure to thrive
  •     Fever of unknown origin
  •     Failure of outpatient therapy

If you are unsure if a patient needs emergency care or admission, our team will help determine the best treatment plan for your patient. Direct admissions require your practice to obtain pre-authorization by payors. Email our Bear Direct Case Managers if you need assistance.

Share Your Imaging

Health care providers can share patient exams with us on the lifeIMAGE Network.

Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Admission

The Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences new patient packets can be filled out by the patient’s parents or guardians with your assistance. The packets should then be returned to Psychiatry via email, mail or fax (please see the packets for more information). If you have additional questions, please call Psychiatry at 202-476-5980.

Paperless Clinic Notes

Children's National Hospital is going paperless effective August 28, 2020. Your patient's clinic notes will be available via fax or direct messaging. Read more information on how this will impact you and your practice.