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An image of a smiling CEO woman, Avah Stalnaker.
CEO Stalnaker Announces Return of ED Physicians and Start of Hospitalist Program

Stonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital (SJMH) is pleased to announce the return of several physicians to the Weston facility's Emergency Department in April and the start of a new hospitalist program.

SJMH CEO Avah Stalnaker made the announcement recently and explained the importance of this for patients.

"We are very pleased that several well-regarded Emergency Department (ED) physicians are returning to the Hospital's employment. On April 16, 2018, Dr. Waid McMillion will become the ED/Hospitalist Director. Other returning staff involved with the emergency department will also be hospitalists including: Dr. Tyler Hall, Dr. Mike Gregory, and Physician Assistant Erik Robey. Nurse practitioner Miral Gibson will transition as a mid-level hospitalist. This program will provide excellent care to all of our patients."

Hospitalist is a fairly new name and physician designation and was first used in 1996 in referring to a physician who provides care for hospitalized patients. While some physicians have emphasized inpatient care for many years, there has been an explosive growth in the number of such doctors since 1994.

SJMH's approach is a modified hospitalist program with the ED physicians serving as emergency department providers but extending that care to admission to the Hospital. By focusing on the care of the hospitalized patient, the physician can gain a great deal of knowledge in all aspects of the patient's needs during the hospital stay. The hospitalist could be expected to be more readily available for the patient than other doctors who have outside offices.

Stalnaker also explained that the in-patients will be treated by the staff as a team.

"After a patient is admitted, the hospitalist will make rounds with the mid-level provider, like Miral, along with nursing, pharmacy, and social services staff. Depending on the patient, physical therapy and dietary may also be involved with the rounds," explained Stalnaker. "This team and the patient will develop a plan of care and everyone will have the same information which is so important for the patient. This will allow us to give the best possible care to our patients."

Stalnaker went on to explain that a patient's own doctor will take over the patient's care after discharge. If a patient does not have a physician, the hospitalist will work to help the patient choose one.

Stalnaker noted, "One of the challenges of medical care is the lack of communication on behalf of the patient. This new program will provide the patient and providers with all the important information they need for the patient's treatment. We will also be able to provide more education, another key component of the patient's treatment."

An example of how the new hospitalist program would work is as follows.

The patient comes to the SJMH Emergency Department and it is determined by Dr. McMillion that they have pneumonia. After Dr. McMillion makes the diagnosis, he then admits the patient to SJMH. Dr. McMillion will continue their care at SJMH, along with nurse practitioner Miral Gibson. Dr. McMillion will continue that care while the patient is in SJMH. At discharge, the patient's care will return to their own primary care physician.

Stalnaker concluded, "We want to provide excellent care to all of our patients here at home. We are so happy that we can give our patients the care they want with the physicians they know."

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