Hospitalists are physicians who devote their practice to the care of hospitalized patients. They treat hospitalized patients who have been referred by primary care physicians, emergency room physicians or other physicians at the hospital. Hospitalists are based in the hospital and will manage and coordinate all aspects of your hospital stay at Helena Regional Medical Center, from admission until discharge. Hospitalists will work closely with your primary care physician and any consulting physicians involved in your care.
Why is a hospitalist caring for me?
Your primary care physician has requested that a hospitalist be in charge of your care during your hospital stay. Your primary care doctor may still check on you and discuss your care with the hospitalist while you are in their care.
How does the hospitalist practice work?
The hospitalist will be in charge of your inpatient care and will see you every day while you are in the hospital. The hospitalist will be available to you and your family to answer questions and discuss your care. The hospitalist works at Helena Regional Medical Center full time to provide care and attend to any emergencies that may arise. The hospitalist may consult other physicians to participate in your care as well.
What is the relationship between the hospitalist and my primary care physician?
Your primary care physician will provide your hospitalist with information about your past health history to the hospitalists and they will discuss any significant findings or events. At the time of admission and discharge, the hospitalist prepares a detailed report of findings and treatment plans that is then sent to your primary care physician. Communication continues between the hospitalist and your primary care physician throughout your hospital stay.
What if I need another specialist while in the hospital?
Your hospitalist will arrange for any necessary consultations from other physicians or specialists. If you have already been seeing other physicians at Helena Regional Medical Center or elsewhere be sure to let us know so that we can keep them informed about your hospital stay.
What happens to my care at discharge?
Since the hospitalist does not have an office-based practice, you will continue care with your primary care physician upon your discharge. The hospitalist will make arrangements for any prescriptions you may need and you may be asked to make an appointment with your primary care physician. You are welcome to contact the hospitalist after discharge if you have any questions about your hospital stay.
What if I don’t have a regular primary care physician?
The hospitalist or any other staff at Helena Regional Medical Center can assist in finding a physician for you to see after leaving the hospital. Records from your hospital stay can be sent to this physician.
Hospitalists are available to patients around the clock and check on them at least once a day, if necessary. Because they don’t see patients outside of the hospital, they can focus their time and effort exclusively on inpatients.