Practice Economics

HM15 Session Analysis: Innovative Hospitalist Staffing Models


HM15 Presenters: John Nelson, MD, MHM; Daniel Hanson, MD, FHM; Darren Thomas, MD

Summation: The presenters, from three entirely different geographic regions across the U.S., walked the audience through several different innovative hospitalist staffing models, from staffing in a multi-hospital system to integrating of advanced practice clinicians to deploying staggered staffing techniques to match the patient demand and enhance continuity of care.

Many multi-hospital systems are challenged to consider creative solutions on how to meet individual hospital staffing needs, while also creating staffing efficiencies across the system, such as cross coverage at night and back-up staffing solutions for increased patient volumes and unexpected staffing vacancies.

Examples to enhance patient continuity were presented throughout, such as pairing together a hospitalist from one week to a hospitalist from an alternate week to care for the same patients.

Similarly, the experts provided a compelling case to consider pairing hospitalist providers with patients, and referring physicians longitudinally across multiple admissions.

Key Takeaways:

1. Patients Come First - consider patient alignment, or continuity, in determing provider scheduling options.

2. Multi-hospital Systems - establish the onboarding parameters needed for providers to be successful in covering more than one hospital and how to build into your scheduling model.

3. Integrate the Care Team - ensure the roles of the integrated provider team (e.g., physicians and advanced practice clinicians) are clearly understood when developing the schedule.

4. Know Your Numbers - clearly understand the workload demands to properly balance the scheduling needs before establishing the schedule.

5. Regular Review - regularly review all of these areas and revise your schedule based on the changing landscape of demands on your hospital medicine group.

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