Hospitalists are physicians who care for patients while they are inpatients, and do not see patients outside of a hospital stay.
At Abington Hospital – Jefferson Health, inpatients may be cared for by their own primary care physicians, by hospitalists or other designated staff members, or by hospitalist physicians who specialize in specific medical conditions.
At Abington – Lansdale Hospital, our hospitalists are internal medicine doctors who specialize in caring for patients during hospital stays. That means that you will have an additional doctor to turn to when you have medical concerns, need information, advice or more during your stay. And because our hospitalists work only at Lansdale Hospital and do not have outside practices, they will be here when you need them.
The hospitalists will take charge of your case when you are admitted to the hospital and will act as "team leader" to help coordinate the medical care you receive throughout your stay. They will work with your primary care physician, specialists, nurses and other healthcare professionals so that you receive quality care and the best possible outcome. If you don't have a primary care physician, the hospitalists will assume that role during your stay.
As you recover, hospitalists will work with you, your family and the medical staff to develop discharge plans and discuss any follow-up care you may need after you leave the hospital. The result, according to studies done at hospitals throughout the nation, is that patients who receive care from hospitalists have better outcomes and can return home more quickly than those who receive traditional hospital care.
What is a hospitalist?
A hospitalist is a physician whose entire attention is directed toward caring for hospitalized patients.
Hospitalists are board certified, usually in Internal Medicine. They are not residents or interns. They are specialists in caring for adult, hospitalized patients.
And, because hospitalists do not maintain outside offices, they can focus all their time on patients inside the hospital. The hospitalist manages your course of treatment through the hospital by coordinating and consulting with specialists, monitoring your progress and staying in close contact with you, your family and your primary care physician.
How can a hospitalist benefit me?
In addition to managing and coordinating your care in the hospital, your hospitalist can answer questions and address any concerns you may have in a timely manner. Plus, by being familiar with every specialist and department in the hospital, your hospitalist can promptly follow up on test results and treatments. This practice results in high quality care for you.
How does the hospitalist work with my doctor?
Since your primary doctor spends most of the day at his/or her office outside the hospital, he or she cannot always be at your bedside when emergencies or concerns arise. Your primary care provider will be notified of your admission to the hospital. The hospitalist will maintain regular communication with your doctor during your stay as needed. In turn, your primary care provider can provide the hospitalist with valuable information about your past medical history, medications and special needs. Prior to being discharged, the hospitalist will consult with your doctor to plan your future course of care.
Upon discharge from the hospital, your primary care provider will be notified and sent a summary of your test results and discharge instructions.
What if my family has questions?
Your hospitalist physician can respond to questions and concerns from both you and your family members while you are in the hospital. Hospitalists are located on-site in the hospital, and round on patients daily during your hospital stay.
What happens when I leave the hospital?
Before you are discharged, necessary prescription arrangements will be made and you'll receive both verbal and written instructions on what you should do to continue your medical care. Your hospitalist will contact your primary doctor and forward appropriate records to his or her office. Once you leave
the hospital, it is imperative that you follow your discharge instructions, including making necessary follow-up appointments with your primary physician. If you do not have a primary care physician, call our Physician Referral Service at 215-481-6334. One of our service representatives will assist you in locating a physician close to home. Since hospitalists do not see patients outside of the hospital, you'll want to direct any questions or concerns to your primary doctor once you've been discharged.
For more information about the Hospitalist Program at Abington – Lansdale Hospital, call 215-361-4854.