The name “hospitalist” was official-ly coined in 1996 by Wachter and Goldman. The emergence of hospitalists was theorized to be an appropriate response to efficiency incentives and pressures resulting from growth in managed care in the early 1990s. Most anesthesiologists are familiar with the traditional roles of hospitalists and their focus on medical patients. However, anesthesi-ologists may not be aware of the expanding role of hospitalists in perioperative care and their prevalence in community hospitals.

The movement of hospitalists into the care of surgical patients was first described by Merli in 2004. The Society of Hospital Medicine subsequently published a special supplement to The Hospitalist titled “Perioperative Care,” in which perioperative medicine was declared “A fundamental facet of (the hospitalist’s) identity” as “perioperative expert.” Many peer-reviewed studies concerning the co-management of surgical patients by...

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