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Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2011 Oct;50(10):923-8. doi: 10.1177/0009922811407179. Epub 2011 May 16.

Evaluating communication between pediatric primary care physicians and hospitalists.

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  • 1Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, PA, USA.


To determine the preferences for and satisfaction with communication between pediatric primary care physicians (PCPs) and hospitalists, 2 surveys (PCP and hospitalist versions with matching questions) were developed. Overall, PCPs were less satisfied than hospitalists with communication (P < .01). The 2 provider types had differing opinions on responsibility for care after hospital discharge, with hospitalists more likely than PCPs to assign responsibility to the PCP for pending labs (65% vs 49%; P < .01), adverse events (85% vs 67%; P < .01), or status changes (85% vs 69%; P < .01). Whereas satisfaction with and preferences for patient-related communication differed between hospitalists and PCPs, the incongruent views on the responsibility for care after patient discharge have major implications for safety particularly if poor communication occurs at discharge. Successful transitions from the hospital to primary care require communication between hospitalists and PCPs to be consistent, timely, and informative with responsibility for care discussed at discharge.

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