4 statistics on hospitalists

A recent analysis of 2012 Medicare payment data for hospital-based physician services found that while non hospital-based physicians outnumber hospitalists when it comes to providing hospital care, hospitals perform more hospital-based services compared to non-hospital based physicians.

The analysis began by identifying physicians as either hospitalists or "traditionalists," which includes primary care physicians and others whose services primarily take place outside an acute-care facility. There was no "hospitalist" designation in the Medicare data.

Physicians who provided more than 50 percent of their total services under the 20 current procedural terminologies commonly associated with hospitalists were categorized as "hospitalists." Physicians who did not meet the threshold were classified as "traditionalists."

Below are four key findings from the analysis:
Note: the data below is based on Medicare patients and doest not reflect Medicare Advantage or private-pay patients.

1. Hospitalist provided 67 percent of the 51.6 million hospital-based services in 2012, which was twice as many services provided "traditionalists."

2. Internal medicine is the most common specialty among hospitalists at 85 percent, as compared to the 58 percent of traditionalists.

3. Medicare paid $3.93 billion for hospital services provided by hospitalists and traditionalists, 68 percent of which went to hospitalists.

4. The average workload for a hospitalist was 910 services or 1,759 work relative value units for the year, compared to 409 services and 748 wRVUs for a non-hospitalist.

The analysis was by healthcare consulting firm Innovative Solutions.

More Articles on Hospitalists:
Emergency & Hospital Medicine Roles in Patient Flow
The "Surgical Home" Solution
How Hospitalists Can Help Improve Healthcare

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