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How Do I Become an Internal Medicine Hospitalist?

An internal medicine hospitalist must be prepared to work 12-hour shifts several days in a row.
Article Details
  • Written By: YaShekia King
  • Edited By: E. E. Hubbard
  • Last Modified Date: 07 August 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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An internal medicine hospitalist is a healthcare provider who works with other doctors to provide patient care 24-hours a day, seven days a week. He or she focuses on meeting the needs of hospitalized patients by ensuring that they receive quality care and remain safe. In addition, internal medicine hospitalists help patients to transition to receiving care from an outpatient provider when possible. These types of doctors must be willing to work nights, weekends, and holidays. A person who desires to become an internal medicine hospitalist needs to complete about a decade of higher education and must have solid communication and analytical skills to enter this field.

If you wish to become an internal medicine hospitalist, you first must complete four years of undergraduate college training in a science field such as chemistry or biology. To get into this type of bachelor’s degree program, you need to provide a copy of your high school diploma or the equivalent certification. Colleges also demand that you submit your high school transcript, standardized exam scores, and a completed admissions application.

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Medical school lasts four years and is the next step to becoming a hospitalist after completing your bachelor’s degree. While in medical school, courses on general industry subjects such as medical ethics, pharmacology, and physiology are necessary to teach you how medications work, how the human body functions, and the established moral codes to which you must adhere to become an internal medicine hospitalist. You also have the opportunity to complete hands-on experience in rotations in various medical field specialties, which include internal medicine and family practice — both of which prepare you to become an internal medicine hospitalist.

A residency additionally is required to enter the medical hospitalist industry. You will receive paid on-the-job training and have the chance to practice diagnosing illnesses in patients and giving treatments to people who are injured. While completing your residency, which often lasts a couple of years, you need to practice caring for patients on demand. An individual who wants to become an internal medicine hospitalist must be prepared to often work seven days in a row for 12 hours a day.

You may enter the hospitalist field directly after completing your residency or after several years of working as a primary care doctor as long as you pursue the necessary industry credentials. If you want to become an internal medicine hospitalist, some areas require that you first become licensed by successfully completing testing. Your medical school also can tell you of any hospitals in your area that are hiring internal medicine hospitalists.

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