International lounge promotes global networking and perspective


At the 2019 Annual Conference, the Society of Hospital Medicine is building on its commitment to develop global relationships and serve as a resource for hospital-based medicine programs around the world. The International Lounge at HM19 complements a busy day of sessions and offers attendees a chance to unwind and expand their perspective on international hospital medicine.

Dr. Larry Wellikson, CEO of the Society of Hospital Medicine

Dr. Larry Wellikson

“Once again SHM will provide a special place for our international attendees at HM 2019 to network and meet with SHM board members, hospitalist leaders, and fellow attendees,” Laurence Wellikson, MD, MHM, CEO of SHM, said in an interview. The International Lounge will be held in National Harbor 3 and will be open on March 26 from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m.

While no formal presentations are scheduled for the International Lounge, the goal is to provide an informal place to gather and communicate, said Dr. Wellikson.

However, some programs and special events related to international hospital medicine are scheduled for other points during the annual conference. A panel discussion on March 25 from 12:45 to 1:30 p.m. will focus on hospital medicine in Brazil, Holland, and the United Arab Emirates and will include information on the growth of hospital medicine internationally. In addition, an International Special Interest Forum will be held on March 25 from 4:30 until 5:30 p.m. in Magnolia 1.

“If you are from outside the U.S. or if you are interested in networking with or learning more about the growth of hospital medicine around the world, then consider visiting the International Lounge on March 26 or attending the Special Interest Forum or the panel discussion on March 25,” Dr. Wellikson said.

Hospitalist medicine is the fastest growing specialty in the United States, and the field continues to expand beyond the United States, according to a report published in 2018 in the International Journal of General Medicine.

Reasons for the growth of international hospital medicine remain similar to those in the United States despite differences in cultural norms, regulations, and health care systems, according to the report. Drivers of hospitalist programs abroad include interest in optimizing hospital operations, containing costs, and improving quality and safety of patient care. The report cited lack of training, care transitions, low compensation, and stigma as barriers to the development of hospitalist programs internationally. However, continued support from the United States to support international hospitalist groups as they organize will help support the growth of hospitalist medicine worldwide, the authors noted.

Throughout the year, SHM supports the growth of international chapters under the staff support of Lisa Kroll, and any attendees with questions about international hospital medicine programs can contact her at [email protected]. Ongoing SHM goals in support of international hospital medicine include an Internet-based regional community on the society’s HMX platform, as well as helping international chapters get organized and develop their own meetings.

International Hospital Medicine in U.A.E., Brazil and Holland
Monday, 12:45 – 1:30 p.m.

Potomac ABCD

International Special Interest Forum
Monday, 4:30 – 5:30 p.m.

Magnolia 1

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