When you are admitted to Culbertson Memorial Hospital, chances are you will not be seen by your primary care physician, but cared for by a Culbertson Memorial Hospital Hospitalist.


What is a hospitalist?

Hospital medicine is a type of practice within internal medicine in which the clinical focus is caring for hospitalized patients. Internists practicing hospital medicine are frequently called “hospitalists.”  Although not all hospitalists are required to be internists, the nature of internal medicine training uniquely prepares internists for hospital medicine practice.  As a result, the vast majority of hospitalists caring for hospitalized adult patients are trained in internal medicine.

Hospitalists provide general medical care to hospitalized patients. They lead the hospital medical team, coordinating care for inpatients. They may examine individuals as they’re admitted, ordering x-rays, diagnostic tests, and other lab work. Hospitalists examine test results, order treatments and medical services, and prescribe medications. Many patients that end up in the hospital have complicated cases. They could have multiple health conditions occurring at once, making hospitalists incredibly important. Unlike specialists that work solely with one organ system or a certain patient demographic, hospitalists see it all. But they also refer patients to specialists when needed. 


Advantages of Hospitalists at CulbertsoN

In addition to the hospitalists who see patients every day in the Emergency Department at Culbertson Memorial Hospital, we now have a dedicated hospitalists for hospitalized patients Monday through Friday. Betsy Birdsley, APRN, has over 24 years of critical care experience and is able to offer excellent patient assessments and will provide holistic, evidence-based care.

The Culbertson Hospitalist program allows for your primary care physician to continually be aware of your progress when he or she is unable to be at the hospital. Our hospitalists are in the hospital 24 hours a day, a level of access that primary care doctors aren’t able to replicate. Culbertson Hospitalists and your primary care doctors work as colleagues and partners, communicating at the time of admission and discharge, at the very least, to be sure that no “information is dropped” at the time of transitions.


At the time of admission…

If a hospitalist is needed at the time of your admission, he or she will speak with your primary care physician, who will then communicate as much information about your medical history as possible. For patients who do not have a primary care physician, the hospitalist will solely handle your care while you are admitted.  They will review any past medical records that you may have at the hospital and will gather information from you and your family. Your hospitalist physician will use all this information to help provide you with the best possible medical care.


When you are discharged…

When you are discharged from the hospital, the hospitalist who cared for you will send detailed records to your primary care physician that clearly account your hospitalization and further treatment needs, and facilitate arrangements for follow-up.  The hospitalist will provide you with any needed prescriptions when you leave the hospital and will also let you know when you should see your primary care doctor.