Hospital Medicine is a unique specialty composed of physicians leading and improving inpatient care with the patient at the center.
What is a Hospitalist?
Hospitalists are doctors who specialize in caring for patients in the hospital. Hospitalists function as your primary care doctor during your stay at the hospital. Trained in internal medicine and/or family medicine, our hospitalists have the skills and expertise needed to provide care specifically tailored to meet the unique needs of hospitalized patients and their families. We work with other specialists to monitor, guide and coordinate all major aspects of your treatment.
What are the benefits of a Hospitalist?
All of the Hospitalist’s time is spent caring for hospitalized patients such as yourself. The Hospitalist is there to concentrate and follow your care in the hospital, monitor your progress, and facilitate discharge planning. Another important benefit of a Hospitalist is that they see many more acutely ill patients and are trained in the latest methods of treating acutely ill patients. This also improves access to your Primary Care Physician during normal office hours because they are able to concentrate their efforts and expertise in the office setting while you are being evaluated by an expert in the care of hospitalized patients who will be able to see you multiple times a day if necessary.
Will the same Hospitalist care for me the entire time I am in the hospital?
Normally you will be seen by the same Hospitalist along with other members of the inpatient team during your stay. Your Hospitalist coordinates the inpatient team which may include physician specialists, nurse practitioners, case managers and other professionals. A member of the inpatient team is there to see you as many times a day as your condition requires.
What Role Will My Primary Care Physician Have During My Hospital Stay?
Your hospitalist knows that excellent communication is the key to providing quality care. Communication is made with your primary care physician when you are admitted to the hospital and again when you are discharged. The transition of your care from your primary care physician to the Hospitalist will be seamless for you and your family.
If any major issues occur during your hospitalization, the Hospitalist will advise your primary care physician. In this way, your primary care physician is aware of any changes in your condition. Of course, he or she can also contact the Hospitalist at anytime during your stay to learn about your progress.
When You Go Home
When you are discharged from the hospital, your primary care physician will resume management of your medical care. To make this transition as smooth as possible, your primary care physician will have direct access to all medical records from your hospitalization. To continue your care with as little interruption as possible, the hospitalist will recommend a specific time when you should begin follow-up care with your primary physician. It is essential that you call your doctor’s office to arrange your appointment.