Non-housestaff medicine services in academic centers: models and challenges

J Hosp Med. 2008 May;3(3):247-55. doi: 10.1002/jhm.311.


Non-housestaff medicine services are growing rapidly in academic medical centers (AMCs), partly driven by efforts to comply with resident duty hour restrictions. Hospitalists have emerged as a solution to providing these services given their commitment to delivering efficient and high-quality care and the field's rapid growth. However, limited evidence is available on designing these services, including the similarities and differences of existing ones. We describe non-housestaff medicine services at 5 AMCs in order to share our experiences and outline important considerations in service development. We discuss common challenges in building and sustaining these models along with local institutional factors that affect decision making. Keys to success include ensuring an equitable system for scheduling and staffing, fostering opportunities for scholarly activities and academic promotion (defining the "academic hospitalist"), and providing compensation that supports recruitment and retention of hospitalists. With further work hour restrictions expected in the future and increased requests for surgical comanagement, the relationship between AMCs and hospitalists will continue to evolve. To succeed in developing hospitalist faculty who follow long careers in hospital medicine, academic leadership must carefully plan for and evaluate the methods of providing these clinical services while expanding on our academic mission.

MeSH terms

  • Academic Medical Centers / organization & administration*
  • Hospital Administration*
  • Hospitalists / organization & administration*
  • Hospitalists / trends
  • Humans
  • Models, Organizational*
  • Personnel Selection
  • Quality Indicators, Health Care
  • Salaries and Fringe Benefits