Please Welcome Our New Team of Hospitalists

Friday, August 17, 2018

[Dodgeville] The Dodgeville hospital is making changes inside and out. President, Lisa Schnedler said, “We are using the expression ‘Something special is happening here’ as we refer to our building project, but it goes far beyond the changes to our facility. In April, Upland Hills Health (UHH) launched a hospitalist program, too.” 

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Hospitalists are physicians—generally specializing in internal medicine or family practice—who develop an expertise in overseeing the care of patients while they are in the hospital. They work closely with the patient’s primary care provider and discharge the patient back into the primary provider’s care following their hospital stay. Today, the American Hospital Association estimates there are about 50,000 hospitalists in the U.S., making it the fastest-growing specialty in medical history.

Dr. Ingrid Berg (left) and Dr. Sara Rybarczyk (center) were the first physicians employed by UHH as hospitalists this spring. Brenda Nolen, (right) Advanced Practice Nurse Practitioner joined the hospitalist team this summer. Local physicians will assist, as needed, staffing weekend shifts and weeknights on occasion.

Schnedler summarized what led to the implementation of the hospitalist program. “Two years ago, physicians from each of the three groups affiliated with UHH came to me and asked that we begin a hospitalist program to support the clinic practices. (The three affiliated groups include Mineral Point Medical Center, SSM Health-Dean and Upland Hills Health.) The physicians requested that we form a group of hospitalist physicians, employed by UHH. Each of the local physician groups appointed a physician representative to work on a committee to develop this program. This committee interviewed the physicians and nurse practitioner who were selected to form this new hospitalist team.”

Danielle Skala is the Director of Acute Care Services at Upland Hills Health. Skala states, “The hospitalist program takes the outstanding care our nurses provide over-the-top to exceptional care. Employing a hospitalist increases the availability of a doctor to patients and families in our hospital. We are pleased to be providing this additional layer of care to The term “hospitalist” was coined in 1996. Today, many hospitals employ hospitalists to specialize in hospital medicine, provide for faster admission and availability for emergencies, questions and concerns. An in-house hospitalist may improve the transition back to the patient’s primary care provider and allows primary care providers more uninterrupted time to care for clinic patients.