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Collaboration Brings Pediatric Hospitalists to ... - Magazooms

Collaboration Brings Pediatric Hospitalists to ... - Magazooms

Dr. Potdar provides

Dr. Potdar provides pediatric urgent care in a child-friendly environment. In an Anderson community survey of more than 200 parents, 74.4 percent said they would be very likely to use pediatric urgent care. During its first week, Kids’ Care saw as many as 51 patients in one day. On average, the doctors see about 40 patients daily. Kids’ Care While one hospitalist is always on duty on the pediatric unit, two are generally covering Kids’ Care, also housed in AnMed Health Women’s and Children’s Hospital. Open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. weekdays and noon to 7 p.m. weekends, Kids’ Care offers parents in the Anderson area a minor-care facility specially designed for pediatric patients. “ERs are just not necessarily kid-friendly,” said Dr. Tillirson, whose background includes experience as an ER physician. “You don’t want little children having to wait three hours to see somebody for a laceration or a broken bone. It’s rough on the family, and it’s certainly rough on the child.” He continued, “Parents now have an option after hours. Instead of having to go to the Emergency Department, now they have Kids’ Care, and it’s run by board certified pediatricians. I think it’s an excellent gift to our community. We wanted to make sure that this segment of our population has the right kind of services, designed just for them.” In addition, Dr. Howard pointed out that the Kids’ Care program provides a convenient alternative for pediatricians in Seneca and other parts of Oconee County who might otherwise refer patients to the ER or the Children’s Emergency Center at Children’s Hospital outside of business hours. “If children need to be admitted to the hospital, the pediatric unit of AnMed Health Women’s and Children’s Hospital is right upstairs. And because the same pediatric group serves both Kids’ Care and the hospital, doctors can easily build a cohesive care plan.” 4 – Meenu Potdar, M.D., medical director for Kids’ Care

Enhance Access, Decrease Cost Taken as a whole, the hospitalist program has opened the door to improved care for pediatric patients in the Anderson community – both inpatient and outpatient – in several ways. It enables outpatient physicians to spend more time on patients in their offices and on routine newborn care; for inpatients, having increased access to a doctor can decrease length of stay and, thus, cost for families. “Just because a patient is not ready for discharge at 8 a.m. doesn’t mean the child might not be ready at 8 p.m.,” Dr. Howard said. “Having pediatric hospitalists physically located at the hospital means they can come and reassess the patient multiple times during the day, thus sparing the patient extra nights in the hospital.” Dr. Howard added that the program also has been blessed with strong relationships between the hospitalists and the area’s pediatric practices. “In Anderson, we’re really lucky in that we’ve had great relationships with the primary pediatricians,” stated Dr. Howard. “We frequently call those physicians at discharge if it’s a particular case where we feel like there’s something that they would want to know about. We also fax a short sheet of discharge information to the office on the day the patient leaves, and they’ll get a formal, dictated discharge summary by the resident. On those faxed discharge sheets, we put the name of the hospitalist taking care of that patient so they can call back if they have questions.” Focused Care Close to Home Dr. Hart said the uneasiness patients might feel at having an unfamiliar doctor assume control of their medical care in an inpatient setting has largely been relieved thanks to the congenial and calming personalities on the pediatric hospitalist staff. “It’s hard for the patients to have their care assumed by someone else besides their primary physician when they’re in the hospital, and I think it takes a talented group to make the patients feel comfortable in that scenario,” said Dr. Hart. “The pediatric hospitalist team at AnMed Health does a really good job with that.” And for patients such as Jaxson with chronic conditions that bring them into contact with the hospitalists regularly, they begin to develop relationships with those doctors, too. “Usually, your children are closer to their pediatrician because you see them more often; but with Jaxson, we have seen so many of the doctors up at AnMed Health that they know who he is,” said his mother. “They’re very personable and just really good to him. They’ve always been very, very nice.” Wages has an older daughter who was diagnosed with epilepsy at age 2, and the family has had to make trips to Charlotte and Charleston for her medical care. Wages said she’s grateful to have access to the care Jaxson needs without traveling far from home. “It has been really helpful and a blessing that we have been able to see people here in Anderson,” she said. For more information, please contact Dr. Howard at (864) 455-5251 or choward@ghs.org. See Dr. Howard and Dr. Potdar talk more about the pediatric hospitalist team at AnMed Health. www.ghs.org/howard www.ghs.org/potdar The presence of the pediatric hospitalist team has allowed local outpatient pediatricians, such as Dr. Hart (pictured with Dr. Howard), to focus more on outpatient and routine newborn care. 5

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