Hospitalists in Medical Education: Results from a National Survey

1Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
2University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
3Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH

Meeting: Hospital Medicine 2011, May 10-13, Dallas, Texas.

Abstract number: 70


Hospital medicine is growing rapidly across the nation, with more than 10,000 hospitalists in practice today. Although initially focused in the community sector, hospitalists have had an increasing presence within academic centers. The University Hospital Consortium 2007 survey found that prior to instituting work‐hour restrictions, 57% of university hospitals had hospitalists, whereas afterward, hospitalists were practicing in 82% of these centers. This changing inpatient workforce has had consequences on medical education, with an increasing hospitalist presence in both resident and student training. The full effects of this have not yet been completely elucidated. Initially met by educators with apprehension, there is a growing body of literature to suggest that hospitalists are perceived by students to be more effective clinical teachers than are nonhospitalists. However, the extent to which hospitalists are involved in teaching internal medicine (IM) to medical students is not known.


To determine the role of hospitalists in medical student education within the United States and Canada, we queried clerkship directors in internal medicine as part of the 2010 annual Clerkship Directors in Internal Medicine (CDIM) survey. In June 2010, CDIM surveyed its North American institutional members, which represent 110 of 143 Departments of Medicine in the United States and Canada. The section on hospital medicine comprised 6 multiple‐choice and 2 free‐response questions. Descriptive statistics were used to analyze the data.


Eight‐two of 110 programs responded to the survey (75%). Seventy‐five respondents (91%) indicated that hospitalists serve as teaching attendings at their teaching hospital. At 22 IM programs (27%), 75%–100% of students rotate with a hospitalist during their IM clerkships. The majority of clerkship directors (51%) report that only 1%–25% of formal didactics are being conducted by hospitalists. Students at 7 respondent institutions (8.5%) rotate with hospitalists on non‐resident‐covered services. Thirty‐three institutions (42%) reported that students are directly supervised by in‐house hospitalists during their nighttime call requirements. Sixty‐six schools (80.5%) indicated that hospitalists hold administrative positions within their institution.


Hospitalists are involved in medical student education in the large majority of Departments of Internal Medicine throughout the United States and Canada. Their educational role appears to be in clinical settings rather than in formal didactics. In some cases, students are supervised directly by hospitalists in the absence of residents. Many educational administration positions are held by hospitalists, reflecting the growth of hospital medicine nationally.


B. W. Liston ‐ none; N. O’Dorisio ‐ none; D. Torre ‐ none; K. Papp ‐ none

To cite this abstract:

Liston B, O’Dorisio N, Torre D, Papp K. Hospitalists in Medical Education: Results from a National Survey. Abstract published at Hospital Medicine 2011, May 10-13, Dallas, Texas. Abstract 70. Journal of Hospital Medicine. 2011; 6 (suppl 2). Accessed April 1, 2020.

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