Why Consider a Career as an Orthopedic Hospitalist?
If you’re like many orthopedists, you may not be sure if a career as an orthopedic hospitalist is right for you—or you may not even be aware this is an option. Why give up your busy private practice to become a contractor for a hospital? There are a number of reasons that even the most successful and experienced surgeons have made the leap to becoming an orthopedic hospitalist.
The Challenges of Private Practice
For many, the hassles of managing their practice outweigh the benefits:
24/7 physician coverage
Strong on-site physician leadership and collaboration
Inpatient and outpatient surgeries
Consults and Rounding
Billing, coding, and collections of professional fees
Proven infrastructure and support of practice
Plus—all surgeries, ancillaries, and professional fees stay in the hospital
Most of the orthopedic hospitalists we talk to have reached the breaking point of managing a practice and are tired of spending countless hours worrying about their financial security. It can become stressful wondering whether you and your partners can make enough revenue in the face of declining reimbursement and the lack of clarity around healthcare reform. But what are your options?
There’s a Better Way
As an orthopedic hospitalist with Surgical Colleagues, you don’t have to worry about any of these practice management stressors. You go to the hospital and treat patients. The typical practice management tasks—staff management, payer negotiations, revenue cycle management, etc.—are handled by Surgical Colleagues’ seasoned operations staff.
This frees you up to practice the essence of orthopedics—injuries to the musculoskeletal system. Fracture work can be among the most rewarding of all surgeries and consultative work. Every fracture is unique, as is every patient who sustains that fracture. It’s an opportunity to significantly impact a person whose life has just taken a dramatic turn with his or her injury.
Additionally, a subspecialty focus on acute care orthopedics allows a seasoned orthopedist to concentrate on fracture work and not worry about learning the newest minimally invasive approach to the hip or provide the latest treatment touted on the Internet.
Imagine not having to manage all of the chronic neck/back/pain issues to build your brand. You see the acute event, fix it, then move on to the next one.
As hospital-based physicians, orthopedic hospitalists get to spend more time with their inpatients. As a busy private practitioner, how often do you find yourself torn between three offices and two hospitals where you operate, all while rushing to round on your inpatients or leave it to your advanced practice provider? This lack of focus is diminished with the hospitalist model. Your job is to take care of your hospital’s acute care ortho needs, not build a practice in your private (and expensive) office.
From a personal satisfaction standpoint, the orthopedic hospitalist model offers many benefits.
Limited schedule. Even though you may need to be available 24/7 for a period of days, when you are off, you are OFF. Your partners take over the practice and run it completely. A full-time Surgical Colleagues orthopedic hospitalist typically works10-12 days per month. That leaves 20 days free to spend as you desire.
No need to relocate. Don’t want to move your family for your career? Don’t worry–you don’t have to! You come to the hospital for your scheduled block, then go home.
You are valued. Work in a situation where you are truly needed. Our hospitals’ emergency departments and medical staffs need your expertise. You provide invaluable relief to your fellow physicians with your presence and willingness to work with them on your mutual patients. And you aren’t competing with anyone—yours is one of the few jobs in orthopedics where you free up other orthopedists to do what they wish to do.
Expanded role. Hospitals rely on their orthopedic hospitalists for so much more than fixing fractures. Surgical Colleagues’ hospitalists are very experienced healthcare providers, having led rich careers in both private practice and the hospital setting. Because of this breadth of expertise, hospital leaders often turn to hospitalists for their expertise and knowledge on topics outside pure orthopedics.