- January 31, 2017
- Posted by: Alice Reiter Feld
- Category: Elder Law Blog
Most of us know that hospital staffing is made up of doctors and nurses. But if you haven’t visited a hospital lately, you may not know about the evolving set of specialties found in today’s hospitals.
A relatively new trend in the care of hospitalized patients is the “hospitalist, ” a doctor who specializes in the care of such patients. In most instances, it will be the hospitalist, not your primary care physician, who will be treating you during your stay.
Hospitalists are most often board-certified internal medicine doctors who have training and experience in caring for the complexities of the hospitalized. Because they do not have a community practice, they’re able to concentrate on patient care, testing and timely communication with everyone from the patient to their families, other physicians and the nursing staff.
A hospitalist’s “home base” is the hospital, so they are experts at navigating the policies and protocols within that setting. This is a great benefit to the patient. The downside is the hospitalist may not be familiar with a patient’s medical history or current medications.
Hospitalists should communicate with the primary care physician to get the information they need to treat a patient, and this is an instance where electronic medical records are particularly helpful.
Do you know a hospital that has a “hospitalist”? Let me know.