Internal Medicine Residents’ Perceived Responsibility for Patients at Hospital Discharge: A National Survey

Eric Young, Chad Stickrath, Monica C. McNulty, Aaron J. Calderon, Elizabeth Chapman, Jed D. Gonzalo, Ethan F. Kuperman, Max Lopez, Christopher J. Smith, Joseph R. Sweigart, Cecelia N. Theobald, Robert E. Burke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Medical residents are routinely entrusted with transitions of care, yet little is known about the duration or content of their perceived responsibility for patients they discharge from the hospital. Objective: To examine the duration and content of internal medicine residents’ perceived responsibility for patients they discharge from the hospital. The secondary objective was to determine whether specific individual experiences and characteristics correlate with perceived responsibility. Design: Multi-site, cross-sectional 24-question survey delivered via email or paper-based form. Participants: Internal medicine residents (post-graduate years 1–3) at nine university and community-based internal medicine training programs in the United States. Main Measures: Perceived responsibility for patients after discharge as measured by a previously developed single-item tool for duration of responsibility and novel domain-specific questions assessing attitudes towards specific transition of care behaviors. Key Results: Of 817 residents surveyed, 469 responded (57.4 %). One quarter of residents (26.1 %) indicated that their responsibility for patients ended at discharge, while 19.3 % reported perceived responsibility extending beyond 2 weeks. Perceived duration of responsibility did not correlate with level of training (P = 0.57), program type (P = 0.28), career path (P = 0.12), or presence of burnout (P = 0.59). The majority of residents indicated they were responsible for six of eight transitional care tasks (85.1–99.3 % strongly agree or agree). Approximately half of residents (57 %) indicated that it was their responsibility to directly contact patients’ primary care providers at discharge. and 21.6 % indicated that it was their responsibility to ensure that patients attended their follow-up appointments. Conclusions: Internal medicine residents demonstrate variability in perceived duration of responsibility for recently discharged patients. Neither the duration nor the content of residents’ perceived responsibility was consistently associated with level of training, program type, career path, or burnout, suggesting there may be unmeasured factors such as professional role modeling that shape these perceptions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1490-1495
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of general internal medicine
Volume31
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016

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Health Care Surveys
Internal Medicine
Patient Discharge
Patient Transfer
Education
Professional Role
Primary Health Care
Patient Care
Appointments and Schedules

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Internal Medicine

Cite this

Young, Eric ; Stickrath, Chad ; McNulty, Monica C. ; Calderon, Aaron J. ; Chapman, Elizabeth ; Gonzalo, Jed D. ; Kuperman, Ethan F. ; Lopez, Max ; Smith, Christopher J. ; Sweigart, Joseph R. ; Theobald, Cecelia N. ; Burke, Robert E. / Internal Medicine Residents’ Perceived Responsibility for Patients at Hospital Discharge : A National Survey. In: Journal of general internal medicine. 2016 ; Vol. 31, No. 12. pp. 1490-1495.
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title = "Internal Medicine Residents’ Perceived Responsibility for Patients at Hospital Discharge: A National Survey",
abstract = "Background: Medical residents are routinely entrusted with transitions of care, yet little is known about the duration or content of their perceived responsibility for patients they discharge from the hospital. Objective: To examine the duration and content of internal medicine residents’ perceived responsibility for patients they discharge from the hospital. The secondary objective was to determine whether specific individual experiences and characteristics correlate with perceived responsibility. Design: Multi-site, cross-sectional 24-question survey delivered via email or paper-based form. Participants: Internal medicine residents (post-graduate years 1–3) at nine university and community-based internal medicine training programs in the United States. Main Measures: Perceived responsibility for patients after discharge as measured by a previously developed single-item tool for duration of responsibility and novel domain-specific questions assessing attitudes towards specific transition of care behaviors. Key Results: Of 817 residents surveyed, 469 responded (57.4 {\%}). One quarter of residents (26.1 {\%}) indicated that their responsibility for patients ended at discharge, while 19.3 {\%} reported perceived responsibility extending beyond 2 weeks. Perceived duration of responsibility did not correlate with level of training (P = 0.57), program type (P = 0.28), career path (P = 0.12), or presence of burnout (P = 0.59). The majority of residents indicated they were responsible for six of eight transitional care tasks (85.1–99.3 {\%} strongly agree or agree). Approximately half of residents (57 {\%}) indicated that it was their responsibility to directly contact patients’ primary care providers at discharge. and 21.6 {\%} indicated that it was their responsibility to ensure that patients attended their follow-up appointments. Conclusions: Internal medicine residents demonstrate variability in perceived duration of responsibility for recently discharged patients. Neither the duration nor the content of residents’ perceived responsibility was consistently associated with level of training, program type, career path, or burnout, suggesting there may be unmeasured factors such as professional role modeling that shape these perceptions.",
author = "Eric Young and Chad Stickrath and McNulty, {Monica C.} and Calderon, {Aaron J.} and Elizabeth Chapman and Gonzalo, {Jed D.} and Kuperman, {Ethan F.} and Max Lopez and Smith, {Christopher J.} and Sweigart, {Joseph R.} and Theobald, {Cecelia N.} and Burke, {Robert E.}",
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Young, E, Stickrath, C, McNulty, MC, Calderon, AJ, Chapman, E, Gonzalo, JD, Kuperman, EF, Lopez, M, Smith, CJ, Sweigart, JR, Theobald, CN & Burke, RE 2016, 'Internal Medicine Residents’ Perceived Responsibility for Patients at Hospital Discharge: A National Survey', Journal of general internal medicine, vol. 31, no. 12, pp. 1490-1495. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11606-016-3855-3

Internal Medicine Residents’ Perceived Responsibility for Patients at Hospital Discharge : A National Survey. / Young, Eric; Stickrath, Chad; McNulty, Monica C.; Calderon, Aaron J.; Chapman, Elizabeth; Gonzalo, Jed D.; Kuperman, Ethan F.; Lopez, Max; Smith, Christopher J.; Sweigart, Joseph R.; Theobald, Cecelia N.; Burke, Robert E.

In: Journal of general internal medicine, Vol. 31, No. 12, 01.12.2016, p. 1490-1495.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Internal Medicine Residents’ Perceived Responsibility for Patients at Hospital Discharge

T2 - A National Survey

AU - Young, Eric

AU - Stickrath, Chad

AU - McNulty, Monica C.

AU - Calderon, Aaron J.

AU - Chapman, Elizabeth

AU - Gonzalo, Jed D.

AU - Kuperman, Ethan F.

AU - Lopez, Max

AU - Smith, Christopher J.

AU - Sweigart, Joseph R.

AU - Theobald, Cecelia N.

AU - Burke, Robert E.

PY - 2016/12/1

Y1 - 2016/12/1

N2 - Background: Medical residents are routinely entrusted with transitions of care, yet little is known about the duration or content of their perceived responsibility for patients they discharge from the hospital. Objective: To examine the duration and content of internal medicine residents’ perceived responsibility for patients they discharge from the hospital. The secondary objective was to determine whether specific individual experiences and characteristics correlate with perceived responsibility. Design: Multi-site, cross-sectional 24-question survey delivered via email or paper-based form. Participants: Internal medicine residents (post-graduate years 1–3) at nine university and community-based internal medicine training programs in the United States. Main Measures: Perceived responsibility for patients after discharge as measured by a previously developed single-item tool for duration of responsibility and novel domain-specific questions assessing attitudes towards specific transition of care behaviors. Key Results: Of 817 residents surveyed, 469 responded (57.4 %). One quarter of residents (26.1 %) indicated that their responsibility for patients ended at discharge, while 19.3 % reported perceived responsibility extending beyond 2 weeks. Perceived duration of responsibility did not correlate with level of training (P = 0.57), program type (P = 0.28), career path (P = 0.12), or presence of burnout (P = 0.59). The majority of residents indicated they were responsible for six of eight transitional care tasks (85.1–99.3 % strongly agree or agree). Approximately half of residents (57 %) indicated that it was their responsibility to directly contact patients’ primary care providers at discharge. and 21.6 % indicated that it was their responsibility to ensure that patients attended their follow-up appointments. Conclusions: Internal medicine residents demonstrate variability in perceived duration of responsibility for recently discharged patients. Neither the duration nor the content of residents’ perceived responsibility was consistently associated with level of training, program type, career path, or burnout, suggesting there may be unmeasured factors such as professional role modeling that shape these perceptions.

AB - Background: Medical residents are routinely entrusted with transitions of care, yet little is known about the duration or content of their perceived responsibility for patients they discharge from the hospital. Objective: To examine the duration and content of internal medicine residents’ perceived responsibility for patients they discharge from the hospital. The secondary objective was to determine whether specific individual experiences and characteristics correlate with perceived responsibility. Design: Multi-site, cross-sectional 24-question survey delivered via email or paper-based form. Participants: Internal medicine residents (post-graduate years 1–3) at nine university and community-based internal medicine training programs in the United States. Main Measures: Perceived responsibility for patients after discharge as measured by a previously developed single-item tool for duration of responsibility and novel domain-specific questions assessing attitudes towards specific transition of care behaviors. Key Results: Of 817 residents surveyed, 469 responded (57.4 %). One quarter of residents (26.1 %) indicated that their responsibility for patients ended at discharge, while 19.3 % reported perceived responsibility extending beyond 2 weeks. Perceived duration of responsibility did not correlate with level of training (P = 0.57), program type (P = 0.28), career path (P = 0.12), or presence of burnout (P = 0.59). The majority of residents indicated they were responsible for six of eight transitional care tasks (85.1–99.3 % strongly agree or agree). Approximately half of residents (57 %) indicated that it was their responsibility to directly contact patients’ primary care providers at discharge. and 21.6 % indicated that it was their responsibility to ensure that patients attended their follow-up appointments. Conclusions: Internal medicine residents demonstrate variability in perceived duration of responsibility for recently discharged patients. Neither the duration nor the content of residents’ perceived responsibility was consistently associated with level of training, program type, career path, or burnout, suggesting there may be unmeasured factors such as professional role modeling that shape these perceptions.

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