Geriatrics (Basel). 2020 Sep 14;5(3):E50. doi: 10.3390/geriatrics5030050.
Hospitalists care for a growing population of older patients with unique social needs that can often be addressed by providing caregiver help in the home. The importance of addressing social needs is well-recognized, yet older patients sometimes refuse these services. This refusal of services may result in rehospitalization and increased morbidity for patients. We aimed to overcome this refusal of social support through an innovative workshop training hospitalists in negotiation and dispute resolution. Hospitalists at a tertiary care, urban academic medical center completed a one-hour interactive workshop on negotiation and dispute resolution focused on addressing older patients' refusal of social services. One month post workshop, participants reported increased confidence in engaging patients and families in conflicts and felt empowered to negotiate in both their clinical practice and personal lives. Training hospitalists to negotiate with older adults needing social services is feasible and positively impacts the ability to provide geriatric care.