Assessing the contribution of hospital medicine patients to the tertiary quaternary care mission of an academic medical center

J Hosp Med. 2023 Dec 13. doi: 10.1002/jhm.13260. Online ahead of print.

ABSTRACT

Academic medical centers must balance caring for patients in their community with their role as referral centers for more profitable tertiary quaternary (T/Q) care. Hospital medicine services, which admit patients largely from the emergency department, often have the lowest proportion of T/Q care and may thus be under pressure to demonstrate their value to the health system. Looking at the 5771 patients that were discharged from our hospital medicine service between 2021 and 2022, we found that three quarters (74.6%) of patients had at least one prior outpatient encounter at our institution, and that more than a third (36.1%) were established patients in departments of strategic importance to our institution. Our study provides a framework for academic hospital medicine services looking to assess their patient population’s connection with the broader health system and suggests that our hospital medicine service provides inpatient care to a population critical to the role of the institution in our community both locally and regionally.

PMID:38093510 | DOI:10.1002/jhm.13260

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