Pediatricians’ Experiences with Pediatric Hospitalists: A 10‐Year National Comparison

1Pace University College of Health Professions, New York, NY
2American Academy of Pediatrics, Chicago, IL

Meeting: Hospital Medicine 2014, March 24-27, Las Vegas, Nev.

Abstract number: 697


Pediatric Hospital Medicine (PHM) programs have grown dramatically in the last 10 years. The last national American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) survey of pediatricians’ attitudes towards and experiences with pediatric hospitalists was conducted in 2002.


National, random sample of non‐retired US AAP members were mailed Periodic Surveys in 2012 (N=790, RR=50%) and 2002 (N=962, RR= 59%). Both surveys included questions on the use of pediatric hospitalists. Chi‐square analyses were used to examine responses of post‐residency pediatricians in ambulatory settings (n=471, n=546) across survey years.


In 2012, 10% of post‐residency respondents self identify as pediatric hospitalists. Practicing office‐based pediatricians attend on 32% of their admissions (excluding newborns) and refer 47% of admissions to hospitalists, 11% to subspecialists, and 9% to surgeons. In 2012, 25% of office‐based pediatricians report never referring patients to PHs vs. 40% in 2002. In both 2012 and 2002, the major reasons for referring care to PHs are hospitalists’ full‐time availability (62% and 61% respectively) and work with hospitalized patients (50%, 54%), time taken away from office practice (49%, 57%), and preference to concentrate on ambulatory pediatrics (36%, 41%). Referring pediatrician satisfaction with pediatric hospitalists is high in both years (89% and 88% satisfied/very satisfied), as is the belief that patients/families are similarly satisfied (85%, 83%). 66% in 2012 and 70% in 2002 say the use of hospitalists has increased the quality of care, while 31% and 25%, respectively, say it has neither increased nor decreased quality of care. Although 84% in 2012 and 80% in 2002 report no change in quality of relationships with patients, more than one‐third report decreases in coordination between inpatient and outpatient care (35%, 34%) and continuity of care (39%, 46%). No significant trends in reasons for referral, satisfaction with, or attitudes towards PH care were identified between 2002 and 2012. Asked in 2012 only, the majority of pediatricians describe communication between hospitalists and pediatricians as moderate or extensive (62%), while 22% describe communication as minimal. Most pediatricians (52%) are very or moderately satisfied with communication, 31% are somewhat satisfied, and 17% are not at all satisfied.


The use of pediatric hospitalists has grown over the past 10 years. Currently, office‐based pediatricians refer ∼ 47% of their admissions to pediatric hospitalists. Pediatrician and perceived patient satisfaction with the level of care provided remains high, and perceived quality of care continues to drive referrals. Continuity and coordination of care have not improved in the past 10 years, and require more focused efforts on the part of the PHM community.

To cite this abstract:

Percelay J, O’Connor K. Pediatricians’ Experiences with Pediatric Hospitalists: A 10‐Year National Comparison. Abstract published at Hospital Medicine 2014, March 24-27, Las Vegas, Nev. Abstract 697. Journal of Hospital Medicine. 2014; 9 (suppl 2). Accessed April 8, 2020.

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