In this week's edition of Life and Health, we learn about the hospitalist program at Mount Nittany Health. Jonathan Siuta, MD, a hospitalist with Mount Nittany Physician Group, joins Sarah to discuss the topic.
According to Dr. Siuta, a hospitalist is a medical practitioner whose primary focus is taking care of patients in a hospital setting. In most cases, hospitalists do not have an office practice of their own, because their main base is the hospital.
"The idea of hospitalists has been around for almost 20 years, with the goal of creating more streamlined care for patients as well as reducing healthcare costs in general," he explains. "The majority of medical care that patients receive comes from their family doctor, in their doctor's office. However, if and when that patient needs to be admitted to the hospital, some hospitals like Mount Nittany Medical Center employ hospitalist physicians who take care of patients when they're in the hospital. This allows your family doctor to spend more time in his or her office, which can help reduce wait times for appointments.
The hospitalist will spend a great deal of time with the patient, gathering information and going over past health records in order to provide the best care possible while in the hospital.
Whenever a patient is in the hospital, the hospitalist communicates regularly with that patient's family doctor. When the patient is ready to be sent home, all medical record information, treatment needs, dietary concerns, medication information and more is communicated with the family doctor, so that there is no lapse in care. Patients will continue to follow-up with their family doctor after they leave the hospital."
"We have a staff of 10 skilled and trained hospitalists, including myself. We all take turns rotating shifts, so there are hospitalists on site 24 hours a day, 7 days a week," said Dr. Siuta. "Our diverse group of hospitalists has extensive training and skills to provide excellent care. Many of us are board certified in internal medicine, family medicine or pediatrics, and because we spend all of our time in the hospital, we're very familiar with the types of concerns and ailments patients may face. Patients should let their nurse know if they would like to speak with the hospitalist. Hospitalists are always available to answer questions from patients or family members."
Want to learn more? You can find answers to your questions on the Mount Nittany website.