Bainbridge Hospital offers more personal care -, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Bainbridge Hospital offers more personal care

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By LeiLani Golden - bio | email

Bainbridge, GA (WALB) –  Memorial Hospital and Manor in Bainbridge is introducing a new service for its inpatients. The hospitalist program, already a feature in many larger hospitals across the country will put even more focus on each patient's care from the time of admission to the time of discharge.

Bainbridge's Memorial Hospital and Manor now employs highly qualified hospitalists who stay with admitted patients from the moment they walk through the doors, until the time they leave.

"Whenever you get to the hospital, the hospitalist is here with you. So if your plan changes they can make changes if they need to instead of your physician coming over from their office,"  said Human Resources & Physician Relations Director Cathy Willis. 

But officials ensure hospitalists will not replace specialized doctors and will work closely with primary care physicians to provide case management.  "We're not leaving them out at all," said Willis. "Instead, it's like an extension. Once you're released from the hospital, all of your records go back to the primary care physician."

Memorial hopes the program will help bring more physicians to Decatur County. "The new physicians today that come in, that's one of the first questions they ask is do you have a hospitalist program?"

Before, primary care physicians would have to set aside large chunks of time for hospital visits. "Some of the physicians have chosen to still do that, which is fine. But if they do not want to, they can send the admit to the hospitalist. They'll be in their office more and be able to take more time with patients in the office."

"We're very excited!" said Family Nurse Practioner Beth Hollis. "This is going to be a positive for everybody. For the physicians, the patients, the community and the nursing staff as well."

Officials say hospitalists will alleviate heavy call schedules, which in turn produces a higher standard of patient care. Memorial Hospital and Manor is in its first full week of the new Hospitalist program.

Officials say it is already being well-received but encourage potential patients to discuss any concerns with their primary care physician because they decide whether to participate in the program.

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