Hospitalists practicing in post–acute-care facilities have a new resource via an SHM partnership.
The society and IPC Healthcare of North Hollywood, Calif., debuted at the "Primer for Hospitalists on Skilled Nursing Facilities" at 2015 annual meeting.
The educational program, housed at SHM's Learning Portal, has 32 lessons meant to differentiate the traditional acute-care hospital from post–acute-care facilities. Lessons are grouped into five sections and two modules, with a focus on skilled-nursing facilities (SNFs), the most common post–acute-care settings.
"The types of resources that are available are different, and that's not only in terms of staff, but the availability of specialists, the availability of testing capabilities," says Joseph Miller, SHM's senior vice president for practice management.
"If you need to work with a cardiologist for a particular patient…how do you engage them?" Miller adds. "You're not going to be able to have them come and see that patient frequently. How do you communicate with them to get the feedback you need as the attending physician?"
Miller says that some 30% of hospitalist groups are practicing in post-acute settings, with the number only expected to rise. That's why SHM partnered with IPC to adapt and supplement that firm's post–acute-care program.
In addition, the rise of bundled payments and other reimbursement plans that include the post-discharge period also make now the right time for SHM to help provide educational resources, he adds.
Miller compared hospitalists to football quarterbacks, coordinating patient care as part of a team. Historically their focus has only been on care within the four walls of the hospital. But this is changing.
“Discharging a patient is like throwing a football pass," Miller says. “Today you don’t pay much attention to the receiver—whether he catches the ball or not. In the future, hospitalists will need to be concerned with completing the pass and scoring a touchdown.”