IS YOUR hospitalist group’s medical director working too hard? And by “working too hard,” I mean spending too much time pulling shifts and not enough time running your program.
I realize that for many of you, your immediate reaction might be something like “Why would I care?!” But as this month’s cover story explains, the answer to that question can be critical to the wellbeing of your entire group.
There are formulas to determine the ideal amount of time group leaders should spend on administrative duties. The most common one holds that directors should set aside 0.05 FTE of leadership time for every group member. But at many groups, program directors don’t receive enough dedicated time—or any at all—to run the group. They’re so busy seeing patients that they end up working an almost full-time clinical job on top of their administrative duties, or they find themselves constantly picking up shifts that aren’t covered.
So why should frontline hospitalists care? For one, a burned out director can’t create a sustaining environment for his or her colleagues.
And a hospital that doesn’t think running your group warrants dedicated time and compensation is sending the wrong message about the value of hospitalists and their engagement in nonclinical duties. The list of those duties just keeps getting longer and more important.
The good news is that program directors are pushing back against unrealistic expectations. In the process, they’re making sure that hospital administrators understand the role that hospitalist programs play in helping hospitals succeed.
Editor & Publisher
Published in the June 2018 issue of Today’s Hospitalist