Hospitalists and the importance of the patient-doctor interaction

With the advent of hospitalists, patients have to interact with more doctors than ever.

This means physicians may be unfamiliar with their patients. Too often however, doctors look past this fact and rush the initial visit, especially in the hospital.

Moreso, hospitalist programs are often staffed by newly graduated medical residents, who may not appreciate this nuance. Academic internist Robert Centor calls this a disadvantage, and that “while residency prepares them with the scientific knowledge they need to deliver competent patient care, it too often neglects patient-interaction skills.”

He further notes that the patient-doctor relationship in the hospital setting “can quickly become intense and require much skill.” It’s what separates good from great hospital physicians.

topics: hospitalist, doctor-patient