Pediatric Hospitalist Workload and Sustainability in University-Based Programs: Results from a National Interview-Based Survey

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Wide variability exists in the clinical workload of pediatric hospitalists without an accepted standard for benchmarking purposes. By using data obtained from interviews of pediatric hospital medicine (PHM) program leaders, we describe the clinical workload of university-based programs and report on the program sustainability perceived by PHM program leaders. The median clinical hours reported for a full-time pediatric hospitalist were 1,800 hours per year, with a median of 15 weekends worked per year. Furthermore, program leaders reported an ideal number of clinical hours as 1,700 hours per year. Half of the interviewed program leaders perceived their current models as unsustainable. Programs perceived as unsustainable were more likely than those perceived as sustainable to require a higher number of weekends worked per year or to be university employed. Further research should focus on establishing benchmarks for the workloads of pediatric hospitalists and on evaluating factors that can affect sustainability.

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