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J Hosp Med. 2010 Apr;5(4):228-33. doi: 10.1002/jhm.588.

Integrating pediatric hospitalists in the academic health science center: practice and perceptions in a Canadian center.

Author information

1
Division of Paediatric Medicine and Child Health and Evaluative Sciences, Research Institute, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. sanjay.mahant@sickkids.ca

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The integration of hospitalists in academic settings has been identified as a challenge to the hospitalist movement. The Division of Pediatric Medicine, Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, was established in 1981, providing a rich resource to examine this field in the academic context and inform academic program development.

OBJECTIVES:

To explore the characteristics, practice, perceptions, and contributions of pediatric hospital medicine in an academic health science center (AHSC).

METHODS:

A cross-sectional survey of physicians attending on the pediatric medicine inpatient unit (PMIU) (n = 20).

RESULTS:

Clinical activity included attending on the PMIU, consultation and comanagement outside the PMIU, and outpatient care of "hospital intense" patients. There was a high level of engagement in research, education, and quality improvement activities. Perceived advantages to a career as a hospitalist included: working in a team; generalist approach to care; stability relative to community practice; intellectually stimulating and rewarding work; and growing area for scholarship. Perceived disadvantages to a career as a hospitalist included: burnout; recognition and respect; and lack of long-term relationships with patients. Themes regarding barriers to establishing a career as a hospitalist in an AHSC were as follows: burnout; time and skills to develop an academic niche; balance between clinical and academic priorities; and system for career advancement.

CONCLUSIONS:

The contributions of pediatric hospitalists to the academic mission were diverse. Fellowship training, faculty development, and balance between time allocated to direct patient care and academic pursuits should be defined. This will help ensure career development, viability, and realization of excellence in the academic context.

PMID:
20394029
DOI:
10.1002/jhm.588
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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