Guidelines for Visitors
We know visitors can be “good medicine” for patients. Family members and friends are welcome to visit; however, patient care is our primary concern. We ask that you follow these regulations established to maintain a peaceful, healing environment for our patients:
- All visitors must provide a valid form of picture identification at the reception desk in the main lobby.
- All visitors to patient rooms must be at least 15 years of age. Some exceptions apply to Women’s Services and Neonatal Unit visitors. In certain situations, a patient may leave the floor to visit children in the Level 1 waiting areas. If you wish to make such arrangements please talk with your nurse.
- No more than two visitors should be in the patient's room at one time. Visitors to semi-private rooms should be considerate of both patients.
- People with colds, sore throats or any contagious diseases should not visit patients.
- Visits should be kept short.
- To maintain a quiet environment, visitors should avoid creating unnecessary noise.
- Visitors are asked to observe quiet times daily from 2p.m. to 4p.m. and after 9p.m. These especially quiet times give our patients even more opportunity to rest and recover.
- Visitors may be asked to leave the room when the doctor or nurse needs to see the patient.
- Visitors should ask before giving gifts of food or beverages since many patients have special or restricted diets.
- Plants and flowers are not permitted in the critical care units.
- In order to protect confidential patient information and privacy rights of hospital staff, patient and visitor use of recording devices such as cameras (including cell phone cameras), video recorders, audio recorders or any other type of equipment used to capture or record images and/or sound is prohibited. Some exceptions apply on the Women’s Services Unit and the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (please see the Child Birth packet for specifics). Please respect the privacy of others and speak to the GW Hospital Patient Advocate at 202-715-4195 if you have any concerns.
The visiting hours for general, medical and surgical units are from 8:00 a.m. – 10 p.m.
ICU visiting hours are from 8:30 a.m. – 6:45 p.m. and 7:45 – 10 p.m.
Please note that specific units may have different visiting hours. If you need additional information, please check with the nurse on the unit.
Any personal information about a patient’s diagnosis and treatment must come from the patient’s physician, and this information is available only to designated members of the patient’s family or those designated by the patient.
There are designated lounge areas for visitors on each patient floor. Specific waiting areas have been designated for families and friends of patients in the critical care units, the Emergency Department and surgery ont he first floor.
Accommodations for out-of-town visitors are available at nearby hotels. The hospital has preferred rates with several area hotels. View a list of area hotels >
Because of the hospital’s interest in good health, and in accordance with local laws, The George Washington University Hospital is a smoke-free environment. For this reason, smoking is prohibited in the hospital, outside our entrances and on our property.
Located on the Lobby Level, the cafeteria is open 7 days a week for service as follows:
Breakfast 6:30 – 9:30 a.m.
Lunch 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Afternoon Service 2 – 4 p.m.
Dinner 4 – 7 p.m.
Evening Service 7 – 11 p.m.
Located in the cafeteria. 24-hour service from 7 a.m. Sunday through 8 p.m. Friday. Re-opens Saturday 7 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Vending machines are located in the cafeteria, Emergency Room waiting area and visitors’ lounges on the third, fourth and fifth floors.