What They Do

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Hospitalists aim to reduce the confusion of a hospital stay and guide patients through their treatment. Although they are physicians, hospitalists don’t have an office practice. Instead, they serve as the single point of contact for a patient moving through the hospital, from admittance to discharge—and beyond.” Duties include, yet are not limited to:

  • Perform medical procedures

  • Design treatment plans

  • Communicate and coordinate with patients and hospital staff 



Hospitalists are physicians, so they must attend 4 years of medical school after getting their bachelor’s degree. After earning a medical degree, they complete a hospital residency program, which may last 3 to 8 years. Some residency programs have started developing instructional tracks to address issues that are specific to hospital medicine, such as quality improvement or hospice care.


What They Make

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) does not collect data specifically on hospitalists. Instead, it includes this occupation among other physicians, such as general internists, family and general practitioners, and general pediatricians.

BLS data also show that, in 2019, physicians and surgeons, all other, earned $208,000.


Where They Work

  • Hospitals


Career Outlook


Updated February 2021