Michael J. Pistoria, DO
Medical Director, Lehigh Valley Hospitalist Services
Associate Program Director, Internal Medicine Residency
Assistant Professor of Medicine, Penn State College of Medicine
Kevin Flynn, MS, Administrative Director
Lehigh Valley Hospital
Cedar Crest Boulevard and I-78
Allentown, PA 18105
E-mail: [email protected]
Lehigh Valley Hospital – Cedar Crest
Ardeth Copeland, MD
Shoban Dave, MD
John Davidyock, MD
William Ford, MD
Arvind Gupta, MD (site leader)
Kweku Hayford, MD
Lehigh Valley Hospital – Muhlenberg
Donna Dowlatshahi, Coordinator
Jeff rey Faidley, MD
Melissa Geitz, DO
Wayne Howard, DO (site leader)
Melissa Liu, MD
Dan Mulcahy, DO
Gonzalo Pimentel, MD
Deborah Sterner, Coordinator
All ABIM certified
Lehigh Valley Physician Group and Specialty Physicians of LVHHN, PC
Lehigh Valley Hospital and Health Network (LVHHN) is one of the largest teaching facilities in Pennsylvania. LVHHN consists of three clinical campuses, two of which focus on inpatient care: Lehigh Valley Hospital-Cedar Crest (LVHCC) and Lehigh Valley Hospital-Muhlenberg (LVH-M). The Network has more than 1,100 physicians and is a major clinical campus for Penn State’s College of Medicine. LVH-M opens a new patient care, tower in March 2005 and has approximately 200 inpatient beds on campus. The campus offers cardiac catheterization and open heart surgery capabilities, and its intensive care unit is augmented by a tele-intensivist system. A 24/7 hospitalist program was launched at LVH-M in July 2003 and is presently staffed by six full-time physicians.
The LVH-CC campus is preparing to undergo a major expansion that will bring its total beds to approximately 800 by 2007. This campus is a tertiary care center, featuring medical and surgical intensive care, a Level I trauma unit, a burn center, open heart surgery, perinatal care and renal transplantation services. LVHHN also boasts active teaching programs, with residencies in internal medicine, surgery, OB/GYN, family medicine, and emergency medicine. There are also fellowships in cardiology, pulmonary/critical care, and hematology/oncology. The LVHCC hospitalist program provides 24/7 service staffed by six physicians and was launched in July 2004.
All LVHS physicians are salaried employees. A bonus was paid to the physicians at LVH-M at the end of the first year of services. A bonus structure is being defined for both campuses, focusing on clinical, quality, and service measures. Each hospitalist receives 4 weeks vacation and 5 days of CME. A stipend is also provided for CME. Hospitalists receive malpractice coverage and reimbursement for licensure expenses. Physicians are also entitled to a benefits package that includes disability insurance, a supplemental retirement plan, and a 401(k)/403(b).
Chart abstraction and billing is done by the employer. At the end of each shift, the hospitalist submits a list of the patients seen and/or admitted. Each campus has a program coordinator certified in coding who reviews the charts for documentation and submits for the appropriate level of care. This system has worked well in ensuring proper billing and in allowing prompt feedback to the hospitalists regarding their documentation.
LVH-M: The LVH-M hospitalist program was developed to provide a resource for primary care physicians in the community who wished to focus on outpatient care. Primary care physicians were identified and ranked in terms of their willingness to refer patients to the hospitalist program. Care was taken not to target groups who already had referral patterns to existing LVH-M groups to minimize the adverse impact of the hospitalist program on these groups. Hospitalists then made visits to these offices to explain the hospitalist program and answer questions from the PCPs. The program quickly became successful and now has a well-established referral base.