A hospitalist is a physician tasked with the general care for patients at a healthcare institution. This can include a wide variety of tasks – from coordinating the different physicians working for that department, to ensuring that patients are well-informed of their rights and the options available to them, and that they can easily cope with the bureaucracy aspect of their stay in the healthcare institution. Additionally, hospitalists are responsible for the communication between the healthcare facility and the family or relatives of the patients admitted to it.
To become a hospitalist, a candidate would need a degree in internal medicine, or something else closely related to medical science. Most of the duties required for performing the job in particular can be attained in the course of employment, though medical knowledge is always a must, due to the specific nature of some of the tasks that need to be undertaken by hospitalists in the course of treating their patients.
Hospitalists earn noticeably less than regular physicians, but the job is still regarded as a very highly paying one compared to most other popular occupations. With an average annual salary of between $145,000 – $180,000, it’s easy to see why so many people see the position as a very attractive one and with a lot of prospects for their career. The working hours tend to be structured in a convenient way and the hospitalist is rarely required to be present for a full working week, which further puts the size of their salary into perspective.