The Visit from Pope Francis

Important Information from MedStar Washington Hospital Center


Pope Francis headshot

In preparation for Pope Francis’ visit to the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception – which is just one-half mile from MedStar Washington Hospital Center (MWHC) – we want to share important information with you about the impact of this event on our operations and your access to our campus on Sept. 23.

Hospital Operations

First, we will be providing all of our normal healthcare services that day, but we will have some modifications to the outpatient schedule. All outpatient procedures and appointments in our physician practices will be scheduled to be completed by noon. Otherwise, we are operating under a “business as usual” structure.

Road Closures/Metro/MWHC Shuttles

Second, if you do visit MWHC that day, expect delays in and around our campus. Many roads will be closed near the Hospital Center, primarily in the areas east of North Capitol Street, beginning at 12:01 a.m. Sept. 23, through the evening hours.

In addition, while the Brookland/CUA Metro station on the Red Line will be open, neither MWHC shuttles, Metro buses nor taxicabs will be able to operate because the station is in the designated Secure Zone. Instead, our shuttles will operate from the Fort Totten station, one stop before Brookand/CUA. Please do allow extra time to make this adjustment. MWHC shuttles also will operate from the Columbia Heights Green Line station, as usual. For additional information about Metro or MetroAccess, click on the links below.

Campus Security

Third, for safety purposes and to make sure that parking is available to our patients and associates – and not used by visitors going to the Basilica – we will be implementing additional security around the hospital. Anyone trying to enter the campus in a vehicle, on a bike or on foot will be asked to show identification and should be prepared to specify the reason for their visit. This will also contribute to delays.

  • Note to Associates: You must have your MWHC identification badge with you at all times, worn above the waist.

Thank you for your patience as we work to keep our operations running smoothly and our patients and associates safe.

Resources for Patients and Visitors

Metro Service Advisory
MetroAccess or call 301-562-5360
Road Closures Papal Visit