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Hospitalists Seek Parity With Hospitals

Joe Cantlupe, for HealthLeaders Media, December 16, 2010

Singer was honored in October as the Physician Executive of the Year by the Medial Group Management Association and the American College of Medical Practice Executives. Singer's company, IPC, The Hospitalist Company, is a provider of management services to hospitalist practices to more than 500 facilities, with employment of more than 1,000 affiliated healthcare providers.

It was the first award for a hospitalist from the groups. Indeed, with increasing numbers of hospitalists, they are in a position to become clinical leaders who drive improvements within hospitals, Singer says. The results could be a mutually beneficially relationship for better patient care.

Singer is an unabashed enthusiast for hospitalists, saying those physicians are in a potentially better position to take care of patients "then a doctor going back and forth to an office."

Back in the 1990s, Singer began his own hospitalist journey. "I took on those contracts for physicians where I would manage their entire population of patients, whenever patients showed up at the hospital," he says. Singer says he was among "pulmonologists trying to grab market share for (pulmonary) practice."

Over the past decade, the number of hospitalists has increased to more than 30,000; have increased, and the need for hospitalists is  expected to grow in the wake of healthcare reform. A report cited by The Hospitalist this fall shows that median compensation for adult hospitalists is $215,000 per year.  And many hospitalists are happy about hospital subsidy programs that are used to buttress hospitalist programs.

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