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Hospital Medicine 2016 Expands, Offers ‘Something for Everyone’


If you can’t find anything that interests you at HM16, check your caffeine level. You might need a cup.

There’s so much in store, you can practically hear the binding of the program straining to contain it all.

If there is a dominant theme at this year’s conference, it’s health information technology (IT), which will be featured in a new track that will span electronic medical records, using IT for documentation and shifting from volume to value, and social media. The keynote address will cover health IT as well.

But even a quick glance captures the diversity of the program: applying for jobs, inpatient management, apps, cost-value questions, ischemic stroke, X-ray, endocrinology, and dying and the counseling of families.

Better buckle up.

Here’s some of what you need to know:

  • There will be new tracks on health IT for the hospitalist, the doctor-patient relationship, post-acute care, and perioperative medicine.
  • The popular “Young Hospitalist” track is back after a successful debut last year. This track covers, among other things, the application process, how to be a good mentee, how to negotiate a first job, and an introduction to quality improvement projects.
    Karen DeSalvo

    Karen DeSalvo

  • To kick off the meeting, a panel will discuss the field’s expansion, or “hospital medicine at the edges.” It will feature big names, including Laurence Wellikson, MD, MHM, SHM’s chief executive officer.
  • Keynote speaker Karen DeSalvo, MD, MPH, MSc, national coordinator for health information technology and acting assistant secretary for the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, will discuss hospital medicine and technology.
  • A series of 90-minute workshops will tackle thought-provoking and relevant topics: “Rule Your Inbox, Rule Your Life”; “Attending 101: Everything You Want and Need to Know”; and “Case-Based Discussion of Essential Issues on Anticoagulation Management.”

Plus, the tracks that form a kind of foundation for the meeting—practice management, academic/research, pediatrics, and quality improvement—will be back.

Get some tips on things to do in San Diego at HM16.

“The annual meeting will have the core content that brings hospitalists back year after year, including something for practice administrators and leaders of practice groups [with] the practice management track, including academics and researchers for the academic and research track, and a quality track for all those [involved in quality projects], and many, many hospitalists are engaged in quality and patient safety efforts across the country,” says Course Director Melissa Mattison, MD, SFHM, assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School in Boston.

The panel on hospital expansion will cover four main areas that are seeing rapid change, according to Dr. Wellikson.

Steve Pantilat

Steve Pantilat

“Hospitalists continue to see their scope of practice evolve and expand,” he says. “In this presentation, we will hear from national leaders about the expanding roles of hospitalists.”

Topics will include palliative care, covered by Steve Pantilat, MD, SFHM, medical director of the University of California at San Francisco School of Medicine palliative care service; alternative payment models, covered by Ron Greeno, MD, MHM, executive vice president for strategy and innovation at Cogent Healthcare; post-acute care, covered by SHM President Bob Harrington, MD, SFHM, CMO at Reliant Post-Acute Care Solutions; and perioperative care, covered by Rachel Thompson, MD, MPH, FHM, associate professor of medicine at the University of Washington.

Dr. Mattison and other organizers thought it was imperative to bring back the “Young Hospitalist” track, which “was wildly successful last year” in both attendance and reviews.

“It’s for people who are aspiring hospitalists—medical students and residents in training—who hope to go on to hospital medicine careers, as well as people who are newly minted hospitalists, people who are probably between one and five years out of their training,” Dr. Mattison explains.

Darlene Tad-y, MD, FHM, assistant professor of medicine at University of Colorado at Denver and chair of SHM’s Physicians in Training Committee, says the offerings for young hospitalists come in response to requests from students, residents, and junior faculty. The track intends to give its audience a sense of how to apply for jobs and start shaping a career path, as well as an understanding of the contours of the hospital medicine field.

Dr. Tad-y says she wants the track to reflect her past experiences at SHM meetings (she’s been to five in a row) of a vibrant, engaged community.

“We wanted our students, residents, and young hospitalists to be able to interact with the whole spectrum of hospitalists—folks who are medical educators, folks who are group leaders, folks who are doing quality and safety work,” she says. “All of our sessions are designed to give them those opportunities.”

Hospitalists, she says, “broadly are game changers.”

“We really want our students, residents, and junior hospitalists to engage with us and see how they can be part of this,” she adds.

Dr. Mattison hopes the annual meeting continues to build on its solid reputation.

“I’ve always enjoyed the annual meeting,” she says. “There are a lot of strengths in SHM’s annual meeting year after year. I think the challenge in planning another annual meeting is building upon that strength and continuing it, and finding new topics and new tracks, and evolving with the times.” TH

Thomas R. Collins is a freelance writer in South Florida.

A Look at SHM Annual Meetings By the Numbers

Some facts and figures you probably didn’t know about SHM annual meetings and a few you definitely didn’t know:

5: Cities that have hosted the SHM annual meeting

3,603: Highest attendance on record for any SHM annual meeting (2014 in Las Vegas)

16: Countries represented at HM15

2,215: Physicians who attended HM15

348: Residents who attended HM15

66: Students who attended HM15

205: Exhibitors at HM15

125: Sessions scheduled for HM16, not including pre-courses

185: Speakers who will appear at HM16

35: SHM staff members who will work on HM16

445: Gallons of coffee consumed at HM15

7,000: Sodas consumed at HM15

1,000: WiFi users, concurrently, at HM15

- Thomas R. Collins

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