Fredericksburg Parent

April 2015

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20 Fredericksburg Parent and Family • April 2015 Ask the Expert Pediatric Hospitalist Program Q: What is your role as medical director? I oversee the pediatric hospitalist program at Mary Washington Hospital (MWH) and Stafford Hospital (SH), which is basically looking at staffing components, but also their involvement in quality or care management practice of the pediatric unit, the nursery area at MWH and the population in the nursery and deliveries at SH. We also do Emergency Department consults that allow physicians or staff to consult our hospitalists with pediatric questions or concerns. Q: Why did you decide to become a pediatric hospitalist? I transitioned from residency and got involved in doing a lot more acute inpatient care. I had more interest in acute management of pediatric care versus the day-to-day aspect of clinical. Q: What do you do on a daily basis? I do clinical work at MWH and Children's National Health System (CNHS) management along with the administrative component. The physician component is like any other physician. When a patient gets sick and needs to be admitted, we care for them. Pediatric hospitalists also handle floor plan arrival and write orders. We assess the patient and do everything from there on. We talk to the patient's pediatrician and handle consults as well. While children are at Mary Washington Healthcare facilities, pediatric hospitalists perform all patient management. Like many local PCPs, pediatricians seldom see patients in the hospital anymore. When children are inpatients at Mary Washington, they are cared for by CNHS hospitalists. a sk t h e e x p e rt I f your child is sick and is admitted into the hospital for acute issues such as pneumonia or sepsis, a pediatric hospitalist will manage their care. A pediatric hospitalist does clinical work as well as building and supporting the infrastructure needed to do pediatric care — quick admission, working on medication safety issues that may come up and assuring that management plans are appropriate for the specific diagnosis. Hospitalists also work with various surgical specialties to help facilitate care with the medical component as they are working with the surgical component. During discharge, they help with primary care physician (PCP) communication and what the patient's medical needs are once they transition to their day-to-day pediatrician. Dr. Francisco Alvarez is an assistant professor in pediatrics at Children's National Health System (CNHS), Mary Washington Hospital (MWH) and Stafford Hospital (SH). Here is what he said about the pediatric hospitalist program. Pediatric hospitalists are involved in every aspect of pediatric care when patients are in a hospital setting. INTERVIEWED BY NIKKI DUCAS at Mary Washington Healthcare ...pediatric hospitalists are there to be part of the continuum of care...

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