Hospitalists’ increased role in perioperative medicine allows for examination of their effects on surgical patients. This study examined the effects of a hospitalist service created to medically manage elderly patients with hip fracture.
During a 2-year historical cohort study of 466 patients 65 years or older admitted for surgical repair of hip fracture, we examined outcomes 1 year prior to and subsequent to the change from the standard to the hospitalist model.
The mean (SD) time to surgery (38  vs 25  hours; P<.001), time from surgery to dismissal (9  vs 7  days; P = .04), and length of stay (10.6  vs 8.4  days; P<.001) were shorter in the hospitalist group. Predictors of shorter time to surgery were care by the hospitalist group (P = .002), older age (P = .01), and fall as the mechanism of fracture (P<.001), while American Society of Anesthesia scores of 3 and 4 were associated with increased time to surgery (P<.001). Receiving care by the hospitalist group (P<.001) and diagnosis of delirium (P<.001) were associated with increased chance of earlier dismissal, while admission to the intensive care unit decreased this chance (P<.001). Diagnosis of delirium was more frequent in the hospitalist group (74 [32.2%] of 230 vs 42 [17.8%] of 236; P<.001). There were no differences in inpatient deaths or 30-day readmission rates.
In elderly patients with hip fracture, a hospitalist model decreased time to surgery, time from surgery to dismissal, and length of stay without adversely affecting inpatient deaths or 30-day readmission rates.