Pittsburgh residents who have spent any time in the hospital lately are probably familiar with a hospitalist. Although these medical professionals are rather new — in the last 20 years or so — there are over 44,000 practicing in hospitals across the United States. Patients should know that these doctors are held to the same standard of medical care and can be sued for medical malpractice.
A hospitalist is a doctor that works exclusively in a hospital. Most hospitalists have residency training internal medicine or family practice, and some have a fellowship in hospital medicine. A hospitalist often serves as a hospital patient’s primary care physician while they are in the hospital. They coordinate the patient’s care and treatment.
A hospitalist must provide the same standard of care as any other physician. If their care falls below or deviates from what another hospitalist would have done, they can be held liable. If a patient believes they suffered harm from a hospitalist they may want to speak with a legal professional skilled in medical malpractice. An attorney can review medical records and consult with medical experts to help get answers for the patient as to what happened. They can hold the hospitalist responsible for their mistake. Compensation may be available for medical expenses, pain and suffering and other damages.
Chances are good that a person admitted to the hospital will have some of their care managed by a hospitalist. Most of the time the encounters are good but occasionally the patient can become the victim of a medical mistake.
Source: natlawreview.com, “Understanding hospitalists malpractice claims“, Michael C. Ksiazek, March 9, 2016