The University of Chicago, Section of Hospital Medicine provides 24 hour a day in-house clinical care at the University of Chicago Medicine (UCM). The Section’s clinical work is performed by more than 50 physicians, advance practice nurses, physician assistants, nurses, and social workers. The members of our Section serve in a broad array of clinical and leadership roles in the Medical Center, Pritzker School of Medicine, undergraduate College, and at Mercy Hospital and Medical Center. Section faculty roles include serving as teaching attendings for general medical patients, running a robust consultative service, and providing inpatient care of some of the most medically complex patients admitted to UCMC including kidney, liver, lung, and pancreas transplant patients. Faculty in the Section continue to be tapped for education, clinical, and administrative roles, highlighting their breadth of skills and ability to adapt to new responsibilities.
We play a crucial role in the care of some of the most medically complex patients admitted to UCMC. These patients include most solid organ transplant patients and oncology patients with medical complications of their disease or treatment. In an innovative care team model, we use hospital medicine physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants in close cooperation with the consulting services to meet the highly complex care required by these patients. We have developed expertise in the management of complications of immunosuppression and other common complications facing these types of patients. Additionally, the Section’s Comprehensive Care Program provides integrated inpatient and outpatient care for patients at increased risk of hospitalization. The Hospital Medicine Section also runs the medicine consult service at UCMC. This service works closely with the surgical and other non-medicine services, particularly orthopedics, urology, vascular surgery, neurosurgery, and neurology. In addition to pre-operative evaluation, we actively manage patients with chronic active medical conditions who are admitted for a non-medical issue. We are available, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with an in-house attending to evaluate and treat patients on the non-medical services that develop an acute medical issue.
As academic hospitalists, the members of the Hospital Medicine Section play important educational roles in addition to their clinical responsibilities. There is always at least one member of the Section on a general medicine teaching service at UCM. These services include one resident, two interns, and several medical students. The patients on this service include patients followed in the UCM system as outpatients, unaffiliated patients from the surrounding community, as well as referrals from the surrounding area for complex medical care. Section of Hospital Medicine faculty cover 50% of the general medicine teaching service, teach as core faculty and serve as two of the three associate program directors for this stand-alone internal medicine residency training program at MHMC. At the University of Chicago, faculty from the Section are involved in teaching residents about cardiac arrests and are active on the internship selection committee.
Hospital Medicine faculty have taken the lead in organizing and implementing a curriculum for a novel transitions service. The Transitions Team is a low-census general medicine service with a novel curriculum centered on the optimization of care across transitions from the hospital to post-discharge setting in a patient-centered manner. In addition to general education regarding the basic tenets of high-quality transitional care, this curriculum centers around three major components: a comprehensive medication review to be performed on each patient prior to discharge, a post-discharge follow-up phone call to be performed for each patient 24-72 hours after discharge, and the implementation of timely and effective discharge documentation for each patient discharged from the Transitions Team. In addition to teaching on the wards, Section faculty contribute to the educational mission of the Pritzker School of Medicine through their work as course directors in two major pre-clinical required courses and as appointed advisors to medical students.