How hospitalists fit into cancer care

Being admitted to the hospital for complications related to cancer or your treatment can be scary and stressful. But hospitalists will help you during your stay. These specialized members of the medical team often have a background in internal medicine but they’re specialized in order to coordinate care seamlessly and help patients navigate through their time at the hospital. To understand the role our hospitalists play in a patient’s cancer treatment and care, we spoke with Marina George, M.D. Here’s what patients and caregivers should know. What does a hospitalist do? The hospitalist is your attending physician while you’re in the hospital. Our job is to synchronize all of your care — including diagnose you, treat you, help you recover — and make your hospital stay as smooth as possible. When our patients check into our hospital, they aren’t just coming with cancer – they have an entire medical history that we take into consideration, such as diabetes, heart disease or arthritis. The hospitalist coordinates your regular clinic or outpatient care team – such as your radiation oncologist, surgeon and/or medical oncologist – and also your inpatient care team, such as nurses and any specialists you may need to see. And we care for you during your entire hospital stay, from when you walk through the door to when you’re discharged. Our goal is to getting you recovered, out of the hospital and back to your cancer treatment in an outpatient setting as quickly and safely as possible. How do hospitalists coordinate care? We’re your medical voice. Patients don’t always know the questions to ask to have an informed,...