In this time-motion study of hospitalists, only 17% of the day was spent in direct patient care, 25% communicating, and 34% with medical documentation. In addition, 16% of the time was spent doing more than 1 activity (multi-tasking). Those with higher patient loads spent the same amount of time in direct patient care, but spent less time communicating and documenting (abstract). Presumably streamlining communication and documentation processes may allow us to see more patients, or spend more time with our current ones.
Dr. Scheurer is a clinical hospitalist and the Medical Director of Quality and Safety at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina, and is Assistant Professor of Medicine. She is a graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, completed her residency at Duke University, and completed her Masters in Clinical Research at the Medical University of South Carolina. She also serves as the Web Editor and Physician Advisor for the Society of Hospital Medicine.