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Hospitalists deliver medical care to inpatients at the hospital. These physicians are trained and specialize in inpatient medicine, and they care for patients while they are in the hospital. Hospitalists are available 24/7 and do not have an outpatient practice, so they are able to focus their time on the provision of care to the inpatient population. They are actively involved in care management and begin planning for discharge at the time of admission.

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Hospitalist Program FAQ

How will the patient's primary physician know what happens during their hospitalization?

The hospitalist group will be in frequent contact with the patient's physician to relay the details of their care. The physician will also be notified if anything unexpected happens during their stay.

Will the patient still see other physicians while in the hospital?

The hospitalist group may consult specialists (such as cardiologists, neurologists, and so on) to assist in the care of the patient if necessary.

Who will speak with the patient’s family during their stay in the hospital?

With the patient's permission, the family will be contacted by a member of the hospitalist group. A hospitalist will be available throughout the day to answer any questions the patient or family members may have.

What are the benefits to the patients if their physician chooses to utilize the hospitalist?

The hospitalist group is available to patients around the clock, seven days a week. The patient can see them as often as necessary. Also, because hospitalists are based at the hospital, decisions can be made quickly as situations arise. This may help prevent medical complications, reduce hospital stays, and lower costs to the patient.

Will the hospitalist practice also provide outpatient medical services?

No, the hospitalist practice will refer all patients back to their primary care physician for follow-up and ongoing care.

How will the continuity of care be maintained between the inpatient and outpatient setting?

Communication is key in successfully implementing a hospitalist program and maintaining continuity of care. The PCP (Primary Care Provider) will be provided pertinent information about the patient's hospitalization to include the discharge summary, discharge instructions, and discharge medications. In some cases, the hospitalist may choose to personally contact the PCP to discuss particular issues or concerns.

Can the PCP continue to see their patients that are under the care of the hospitalist?

During the hospitalization, the hospitalist is the attending physician of record; however, PCPs are welcome to provide courtesy visits to their patients. If they have any specific questions, recommendations, or concerns, they are welcome to contact the hospitalist and discuss them.

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