Friday, 01 February 2013 00:00
The latest in hospital care is, a hospitalist.
Don’t know what that is? Check out Plainview Hospital, which began a hospitalist program last October and plans to expand it to Syosset Hospital, according to Dr. Alan Mensch, senior vice president of medical affairs at Syosset and Plainview hospitals, part of the North Shore-LIJ Health System.
Under the program, patients are assigned a doctor responsible for their care during their hospital stay.
A hospitalist doctor coordinates with a patient’s primary care physician and is a critical part of a patient’s care while they are in the hospital. The patient’s primary care physician will consult with the patient prior to enrolling them in the program; the process is similar to a doctor referring a patient to a specialist. Among the benefits of being treated by a hospitalist is that patients can be treated by a doctor whenever they need care and the length of their hospital stay can be decreased.
“Hospitalized medicine is becoming a specialized field,” said Dr. Mensch. “One of the advantages of having a hospitalist is they are immediately available to their patients in the hospital. They are also able to assume other responsibilities, including teaching the resident staff, getting involved in hospital committees and supervising rounds.”