What is a Hospitalist?
A hospitalist is a doctor who works only in a hospital setting. Hospitalists care for patients who are staying in the hospital to recover from an illness or a surgery. Most hospitalists are also internists, and many primary care doctors are hospitalists. Some of them also work in subspecialties or have work in other areas early in their careers.
Hospitalists coordinate care for patients admitted in the hospital. They play the role of Primary care doctors in hospital settings.
How does a doctor become a Hospitalist?
To become a hospitalist, a person must first complete an accredited undergraduate program. Next, they must attend medical school for at least 4 years. After medical school, hospitalists must complete a residency program in internal medicine or family medicine. Many hospitalists also complete a fellowship in Hospital Medicine and go on to become certified and licensed.
What types of diseases do Hospitalists treat?
Hospitalists treat a variety of different illnesses. Because they are trained in internal medicine, they are familiar with many types of diseases and illnesses. Hospitalists typically treat patients who are acutely ill and are staying in the hospital. They make rounds and care for many patients at a time. Some of the most common diseases treated by hospitalists include:
Patients admitted in hospital for various medical reasons.
- Drug overdose
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Patients recovering from surgery
- Heart attack
What diagnostic tests and procedures are used by Hospitalists?
Since hospitalists see so many patients a day, it is important for them to diagnose each patient properly. They work with many other doctors and specialists to come up with the right diagnosis, and they use many different tests to help confirm the problem. Some of the most common types of diagnostic tests used by hospitalists include:
- Complete blood count test
- Complete metabolic panel test
- Fasting blood glucose test
- Thyroid function tests
- Liver function test
- CT scan
How do Hospitalists treat diseases?
Hospitalists determine which treatment to use on their patients based on the symptoms, overall health of the patient, and numerous other factors. They know which treatments work best for each disease and help patients heal. Some of the most common treatments used by hospitalists include:
- Pain medicine
- Blood transfusion
- Massage therapy
- Anti-inflammatory drugs
- Breathing treatments
- Nutritional therapy
- Wound dressing
- Tumor removal
- Pediatric care
When to see a Hospitalist?
Most patients don’t have to worry about arranging to see a hospitalist because they will only be cared for by one if they are in the hospital. Each hospital has its own hospitalist; however, sometimes the patients’ primary caregiver may check on them during their hospital stay and even double as a hospitalist. They work closely with nurses and surgeons and help patients recover from whatever illness, injury, or disease they are suffering from while in the hospital.