The Hospitalist Program is part of a collaborative venture between Lewistown Hospital and the Geisinger Health System. The Hospitalists are employed by the Geisinger Health System but they practice, for the most part, here at Lewistown Hospital.
Hospitalists are physicians who specialize in treating people who have been admitted to the Hospital. They do not have a private office practice. Hospitalists are specialists who are present in the hospital at all times to care for our hospitalized patients. They complement care people receive from their personal or private physician, and they make a special effort to communicate important healthcare information back to those physicians. They provide a direct link to the patient's family doctor.
Family doctors, among other doctors, have commitments outside the Hospital, such as an office practice. They might not be present when their hospitalized patients need their attention. That's where the Hospitalists come in, because one or more Hospitalists are always in the Hospital to meet the needs of our patients in a timely and consistent manner. So, when a person needs to be hospitalized, a Hospitalist will be available to admit that person and become the "attending physician" during his/her hospital stay.
Private physicians may choose to continue to admit their own patients and, in that case, a Hospitalist would not be involved in the care of that person. In addition to the above, there are real benefits from knowing about and using the Hospitalist Program. For example, the Hospitalists know every specialist and department in the Hospital. That means they have a direct line to the care you need.
Working with a Hospitalist is a win-win arrangement for you and your doctor. It allows your family doctor to be available in his/her office rather than spending time traveling to and from the Hospital. Because Hospitalists are always available in the Hospital, you or your personal physician can talk to them anytime you like. Because they are always here, they can respond quickly to your changing needs. It's a positive formula for quality healthcare that is more consistent and efficient!